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tv   C-SPAN Weekend  CSPAN  December 26, 2009 2:00pm-6:15pm EST

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and they have years of hard won scholarly expertise vetted by peer review. years of effort to put into understanding a problem. and they bring to this to tavenlt and if the normally squabbling party converges on a view that the government is taking a wrong step, the government should listen. this argues that this expert opinion debate is one of democracy's big advantages over aut oksies. and that there's a strong support for this. however, this basic conventional wisdom fails to distinguish between what we might call normal uncertainty that international relations normally has, endemic, and the profound deep uncertainty that follows, paradigm shattering events like the fall of the wall and 9/11. and i suggest an argument along the lines that for two reasons at least actually scholars may not be able to put their best
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foot forward in precisely the sort of circumstances that this conference is dealing with. . . no carrierringconnect 1200 if the government happens to be powerful like the united states, that influence the future of a lot. scholarsñi are at an informatiol disadvantage.
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independent scholarly experts may be at a cognitive disadvantage. they may make particular kinds of investments in particular kinds of reasoning and knowledge that are not well-suited to uncertain times. scholars have two things that differentiate them from governmental experts. they have theory that they care a lot about and invest a lot in. non-government of experts place huge investments in theories. they also have systematic research with the date are historians, political scientists, or other social scientists. they seek to understand things in general. historiansxdçó may claim they dt seek to do this. i beg to differ. any major historical account contains a powerful explanation.
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that is a very different intellectual enterprise then deciding what to do in a massively fluid situation what what happened after the fall of the berlin wall or in september of 2001. the strength that scholars have in normal times is an incoming handicap in theseçó uncertain, rapidly moving times. with that. i am -- when the paradigm is cut loose, it changes things. i will go quickly here. ñithe bottom line on 1989 is tht the scholars were way behind the curve. they were much slower than the
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government to see what was happening. when they did figure out what was happening, the overwhelming preponderance of scholars who were experts on these matters all thought that the idea of rapid unification was a very dangerous move. overall, their views were much closer to those of margaret thatcher than those of helmut kohl and george w. bush. it was very dangerous for a variety of reasons. their theories predicted massive change are almost always associated with war. you saw this as a moment pregnant with the possibility of war. that is what motivated the back to the future arguments. the bipolarñi divisionñr of eure has maintained peace. rapid unification of germany will in fact and bring that will
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d -- bring back multi-clarity that will bring war. that was his argument. -- it will bring that multi- polarityw3ñiçó that will bring . there were a lot of reasons. the bottom line is that scholars were behind the curve and overestimated the risks involved with rapid unification. this is connected to the conduct of style but i am talking about. ñialmost the clearest case we he is theçó expansion that began to hit the radar screen in the middle of 1990. we had a powerful scholarly consensus against the idea that nato was central to europe.
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i do recall a lot of historians were not at all shy about applying the historical knowledge to contemporary politics. john dalgattis he had never encountered the decision that met with more opposition from historians and the expansion of nato. they predicted a lot of bad things would occur if we insisted on forcing nato into central europe. russia will align with china in a massive geopolitical alliance. russian democracy would collapse. russia would oppose the united states consistently throughout the world. overall, it would result in a significant near-term cost to the united states. george kennan called it the most catastrophic decision united states has made in the post-cold war world.
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this was often grounded in theory and the radical analogy. there was the theory of the balance of power. this was the situation in which you have a humiliated great power excluded from a post-war settlement that would balance internal and external factors with the other key great power out there, china. it was not just the political scientists making this argument. it featured prominently in the argument of historians. this argument failed to update the theory of the balance of power to completely different settings. the world was not multi-polar and russia did not face the same choices as in the 1930's. russia did take a course that was less favorable to the united states. the magnitude of the costs
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incurred -- even if you associate today's relatively recalcitrant russia, if you associate that with nato expansion and say it is because of the expansion that we have russia, the magnitude of russian opposition and alliance behavior is a pale shadow of what was predicted from the scholars. they were talking about geopolitical shift that would change the landscape. there is a very interesting case with iraq. we have a build up to the war with a short window for scholars to develop their arguments. it was only late in the game that it became clear that the invasion was likely to happen. the window for scholars to figure out what was happening and come up with arguments was smaller than you might think. the scholars who opposed this
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were exactly the same people who exhibited what in hindsight seem to be shortsighted analysis in the previous cases. they argued that this was a bad idea primarily on the following four arguments. the policy of containment and sanctions can work. they were defenders of the policy in washington that was discredited. they said that war would be very costly. saddam hussein probably use wmds engaged in urban warfare. war is very costly. third is the china shop argument. you invaded. you own it. it will be difficult to hold together. it will probably be a prolonged occupation. fourth, it will divert resources from the important struggle
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against al qaeda in afghanistan. those were the key things of their argument. my time is up. i would say that all the arguments adopted in the three decisions i have talked about, this one looks the best in hindsight. that said, it is very different than the arguments that you hear now. it is -- nonetheless, it reads relatively well in hindsight treated it is the least connected to the scholars own theories. the scholars making the analysis disconnected themselves in many ways from their previous intellectual investments in grand theory and explanation. to conclude, i would say that overall the scholarly performance in these three episodes is not amazing.
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it is less good than many would have you believe after the fact. it seems to be a disconnect between building general theory and explanation and making decisions under the circumstances. there is an implication. scholars frequently criticize policy makers. there have been many calls for humility. my paper certainly adds to the call for humility on our part. i think we can do better. i think we can provide policymakers with better insight. it will involve a very difficult trick in uniting the general with the particular. that is the hardest job as caller has to do. >> thinks you, bill wohlforth
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for those cool but there comments. -- thank-you, for those cruel but fair comments. the panelists seemed to have assumed that p i am assumed thatutin -- the panelists seemed to have assumed that i am more lighke putin than gorbachev. rather than comment, and want to ask the general question to get things started. i have many questions. i have been struggling to narrow it down to one. it is a question that everyone may want to weigh in on. there are many particular disagreements among the panelists. let me ask a general question.
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if we agree that there is a disruptive moment for a punctuational moment, turning point, threshold -- how do you know you are in one of these at the time? i ask this for a couple of reasons. we choose 1989 for obvious reasons. their questions about whether the bush administration responded in the right way or as well as they might have. 1991 million -- 1981 might have been the real opportunity. i am highlighting that there is disagreement on how much potential there was in 1989. how much of the turning point was 9/11? the leading argument has been
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that the bush administration overreached. they thought the world had changed more than it had on 9/11. how do you know you are in one of these? if you can figure that out, how do you decide how much leeway the united states has? how much has the world changed? how much can be reshaped by the united states? anybody care to take a stab at that? >> because you mentioned punctuational moment, a talk about how international relations involve a number of different disciplines like history, sociology, and economics. we could pay more attention to biological theory. i talk about the concept of
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punctuated equilibrium. the argument is advanced as a counter promotion of gradualism in evolutionary biology. the idea that great changes evolve gradually over time. he did not believe it was true. he believed the fossil record showed they have long times of equilibrium punctuated by extremely dramatic changes. in the broader paper but not in my comments, i talk about trying to look at these moments and the aftermath. i suspect that they are profoundly significant in that they cast a long shadow over much of the fifth with frigid cast a long shadow over much of the future. -- i suspect they are profoundly significant in that they cast a long shadow over much of the future.
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if you do not know it, it is not one. these are world change in events where it is clear that something is quantitatively different than before. if it does not rise to that level, i would say it is not one. the challenge of the policy makers is to get off the mark quickly. timing was of the essence to come up with new concepts quickly, to keep your enemies off balance. never interrupt your enemy when he is in the process of making a mistake. do not give him time to realize he is doing it. that is in the hands of the policy makers. >> if the soviet union had been collapsing to the same time the berlin wall opened, everybody would have known. it would have not just been a punctuational moment.
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it would have been bigger. the east germans did not open the berlin wall. the berlin wall was opened by the people. that is like going over niagara falls in a barrel as a policy maker. you cannot anticipate this. on the other hand, you have to deal with it. if someone had told me the soviet leader's had not mobilized to stop the wall from being breached, i would have told them they were crazy. that is what happened. it cannot be anticipated. the momentum of the debt carries forward. the collapse of the soviet union is more predictable. it is something one could have
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conjured for a couple of years. it strikes me as an event that one to plan for. -- it strikes me as an event that one could planned for. there is a continuation of the world economy. nato was extremely important in getting together with europe after the fall of the central front and the berlin wall. i never would have predicted that nato expansion would have gone to the degree of the crane detaching from the soviet union. -- i never would have predicted that nato expansion would have gone to the degree of the ukraine detaching from the soviet union. it would have seemed very unlikely. i am not going to cry about that. things happen in the world that
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tell us that we are wrong. policymakers and scholars are quite united on this. maybe they were not. but i do not know. those dealing with the day to day may have had a better perception i. it is critical when things that you believe turn out to be false. you have to deal with that and figure out where to go from there. >> that is a great question. it is easy to say in hindsight when you are in such a moment. when it is unfolding, it is much harder. the work i did comparing governmental and non-government experts suggests that the government's work quicker to realize that the assumptions of predictions that would have been
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true for 40 years were not true under these circumstances. the scholars and outsiders were slower to update. i think that is partly because of information. those in government had better information. i also think the scholars were more wedded to the concept that developed over four years. when something happens outside of the expectations, it is reasonable to except it as an anomaly. as the events pile up that are not consistent with the paradigm you have in your head, that is when you start to update. in hindsight looking back at my own career of international relations, i am struck by how long it took them to realize that much of what they thought they knew based on the cold war experience did not apply to
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great power politics anymore. we can debate this. the question on 9/12 was if we were in a world where we have fundamentally news estimated the balance of power. the question on 912 was if we were in a world where we had fundamentally wrong week estimated the balance of power. with the passage of time, it is less possible -- plausible that the that was a harbinger of a new era where government was powerless. one of the reasons why governments seem to be prevailing is because of what they are doing. if they were not doing the counter-terrorism they are doing, we do not know that the bells would have worked out the way it has so far. >> i wanted to say something
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about 9/11. i think i disagree with mary that it was a punctuational moment similar to the fall of the soviet union or the berlin wall. what was it then? if you think back to the anarchist attacks the year before with the bombs going off , the combination of anarchism and nihilism that 9/11 represented, and then we factor in the history of the last eight years, it increasingly appears that with john and i are saying -- that what john and i are saying is that 9/11 was not a seizucesure but was taken to ben
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by the bush administration. in their position, are probably would have done the same thing. the political costs of saying these are anarchists and it is unlikely to happen again, you just cannot do that. it may be that policy-makers are more hamstrung by political forces that will not let them get away with what i just said, even if it happens to be true. maybe it is. maybe it is not. >> for the paper, i was defining punctuational moments as those that had a dramatic impact on u.s. policy. it seems to me that 9/11 will apply under the constant. >> let me open it up to questions. identify yourself. right here. >> one of the interesting
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questions is whether there are other turning points or moments that we did not see. i would argue there is a long potential list of 1945, 1946, the beginning of the soviet expansion in eastern europe. 1953 to 1957, the end of stalinism. one of the issues the government internally debated for a long time was the reality of the soviet split. that had profound geopolitical effects. i would argue that the real punctuation all event -- that the real punctuational yvette was perestroika -- that the real
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punctuational event was perestroika. others became more likely. as historians or political scientist, to you think there are missed punctuational moments in post-world war ii history? >> i certainly do. i think the cold war began to end in east asia in the 1970's. economic forces from nixon on have run roughshod over the division of east asia that came out of world war ii and the korean war. a punctuational mom is certainly the reforms of 1978. everyone realizes in retrospect that it was important. -- a punctuational moment is
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certainly the reforms of 1978. it is not thought of in the same way as the berlin wall. we knew that sooner or later china would wake up and get rid of maoism and join the world system. it makes it less of an earth shattering event simply because it is what we would expect or predict. i think it is a huge thing. it transformed china immeasurably. >> you are absolutely right. i say in the paper that punctuational moments are not limited. these are very this similar events -- these are very dissimilar events. i wanted to compare them as moments that had dramatic impact
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on u.s. policy. it is in no way limited to those two. the way i am trying to use the term is as a unique moment when the long-term and short-term combined. you have long-term forces developing that have the triggering event. it becomes obvious to the most obtuse that things have changed. i am trying to think of a specific moment. the morning of september 11. try to find the moments that are specific yet some allies the changes that have an impact. i am trying to think of these as when commodore perry gets off the boat. it does not just have to be western or european.
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that is how i am trying to use it when it comes to a particular moment. it is the moment when things changed and now we have to do things differently. >> right here. >> you are right. i supported the right of the people of poland and the czech republic to choose freely which defensive alliance they would be members of. that was not a popular point of view in the mid-1990s. what really concerns me and what i would like to your reaction on is afghanistan. i pointed to that in my paper.
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what happened after the operation had been carried out. i wonder about this. do you think when you look back after the invasion of afghanistan in 2001 that one of the points that stand out for the whole decade is the sense that the cause of the overwhelming support of the operation, the problem could be solved much more easily in a way that the general consensus carried over onto policy-making for afghanistan after the yvette? was it easier to solve with regard to domestic public opinion and would be easier to solve abroad? people who worked on
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afghanistan argue along those lines. it was so easy to achieve with regard to creating consensus at home. afghanistan could be written off much more easily. >> should we answer each? are you collecting? >> i have no scholarly it were for answering your question. -- i have no scholarly warrant for answering your question. i study the 9/11. . they started to argue that we were diverting resources from the necessary struggle against al qaeda. there was the position yes afghanistan and no on iraq.
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that was from the very beginning. i do not know if they followed it up with real analyses of afghanistan showing that they needed more resources. i can say that there were people on the left who said it should go through the u.n. and that osama bin laden should be handed over to an international court. that was not the position of most mainstream security scholars. they did not think it could possibly work. they never thought this would work. they thought we would have to go to troops. they thought it would take at least half a million troops to do with afghanistan. when it worked, to their credit, the scholars said, "holy moly, they deserve credit for a
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brilliant strategy." it is important to remember how unexpected the fall was and how much it seemed to be a smashing success. there was skepticism it would work but widespread applause when it did seem to work. >> i remember going to in why you -- nyu for a lecture series. i did not know your view on the afghanistan war. all i knew was that i cannot imagine an american president not going after the taliban. he would be thrown out of the office the next chance the american people got. that was greeted with a lot of hostility. it still seems to me that the particular invasion of afghanistan was pre-determined
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by domestic politics if nothing else. i thought that the invasion of iraq was not only are wrong choice the self-inflicted wound on the part of the bush and ministration as it developed. a think earlier someone said outdoor might have done the same thing. -- i think earlier someone said that al gore might have done the same thing. we could argue about that. i still believe that those two wars were fundamentally different. >> john mueller? i have been keeping a list. >> two issues for build. i wish she would explain the people were exploding -- who are opposed to the unification of germany. your last point is well taken. he was also: powell -- it was
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also colin powell who said that the winter would come up with thousands of more trips. it surprised everyone how spectacularly successful it was. predicting that was hard. i would like to ask a question. you mentioned baker talking about bringing russia or natthe soviet union into nato. there is the argument that every alliance was designed to control the allies. in many cases, that was the main point of the alliance. it was to control allies instead of enemies. would you talk more about the idea of expanding nato to include either russia or possibly the soviet union? what happens to that idea?
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>> the paper has a lot of footnotes of various people. there's even lengthier footnote in the book about the thinking at various points in the game. if you carefully look, you will see the people who were skeptical. not just the international relationships scholars but people who were more immersed in the german question. they studied east european politics and were specialists on germany and the soviet union. the footnotes will be expanded. the key point i want to make is not to sound pretentious, but the paper is not analyzing scholars. it is analyzing scholarly evaluations or scholarly
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analyses. i do not want to necessarily get into a story about who is good or bad. i was wrong about most of this stuff. >> ending on that strong note. [laughter] the issue of native turned out to be huge. when i started to read the book on german unification, i did not expected. i got into russia, germany, france, england, and america. it became clear to me that nato was an integral part of the german unification process. i have read often that it was an issue of the putin era. there is a huge section in the book on it. i will sketch out a few ideas here. on the question of whether
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alliances are about controlling allies as well as enemies, there was a separate organization that managed french and british expectations on top of nato. on the question of expanding nato, that comes up very early. there is discussion about moving need to be stored, into east germany and beyond. -- there is discussion about moving nato eastward, into east germany and beyond. i have a running tab of it earliest mention of nato and eastern europe. the state department started writing about it in march of
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1990. there were talking about putting a toe in hungary -- they were talking about putting nato in hungary. early on, there is discussion about nato moving into eastern europe. some of this is internal polity -- policy discussion. some of it is public. they're not saying nato membership, but some kind of partnership. it is not un controversy. -- the issue is not without controversy. there's enough of it that gorbachev picks up on it. in a conversation with baker, he is trying to come up with structures for post-cold war era.
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-- for post-cold war europe. he said they could have an e-7 with the security council. baker said it would not work. gorbachev asked about pushing russia in nato. baker said that was in the realm of fantasy and let's get in the realm of reality. it does come up. it is never taken seriously in the west. baker later says in public that if russia embraces democracy and free markets, we should include it. what comes out in the book on nato expansion is that i concede
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two of cases for nato expansion but they lead to two different and points. -- two different endpoints. nato helps new democracies. it provides them with security. i find that to be justified. there are calls for people for that to happen. it should have gone further. you could say that nato is a military alliance. in that case, it is expanded. you will take on eastern europe and have new liabilities. the point of an alliance is to create military security for the members.
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i can see the justification for expanding nato. these have the courage of your convictions and see it all the way through to the end. -- then you should have the courage of your convictions and see at all the way through to the end. >> i have a question in a different plane but on the same highway. -- i have a question in a different lane but on the same highway. an important thing is a vibrant and strong economy. if we look at times that have changed our nation, september 14, 2007, had to do with bear stearns and lehman brothers. that brought to our attention a long-term deficit trend as well as a short-term tremendous blow to our economy.
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for the people in here, should that date symbolize -- the along the lines of the berlin wall, 9/11, that it affected our nations in that way? it looks like a trend that will happen for a while. se>> this goes back to john owen 's first question about how we know when we are in one of these moments. if you are analyst, it is important to set yourself benchmarks for rethinking fundamental assumptions. i would answer your question in a negative. i do not see the financial
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crisis as such a moment. i have an old fashioned way of thinking about things. i made the victim to the same scholarly problems i talked about. -- i made the victim to the same scholarly problems i talked about. -- i may be a victim to the same scholarly problems i talked about. if the entities with the most capability are not altering their strategic remarks -- frameworks, we do not have evidence for being one of those fundamental, a geopolitical moments. in 1989 with each passing event, with each communist regime that changed, with each piece of evidence about what the soviet union would do or not do, we were learning the fundamental assumptions about what a major
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power would do were wrong. as a result of the financial crisis, i do not see china, russia, or the united states dramatically changing their fundamental approach to the strategies. >> i agree with that. i would say that if we want to take a date that will live in infamy, that would be the stock market crash in 1929. what was characteristic at that time was that the british could not hold the world economy together. the u.s. was not ready to try to do so. in the most recent crisis in your bill in september, the u.s. acted with extraordinary vigor trying to stem the bleeding from the financial crisis. a year later, we're coming up with old or new regulations that
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would prevent it from happening again. the characteristic of the last year is that there's no one waiting in the wings to replace the united states. in 1949 or 1931, the u.s. was waiting in the wings. it had been the most productive economy if it did not have the political will to do so because of isolationism and so on. in the current situation, there is no one that anyone can turn to. you cannot turn to china or the european powers to put on to the empty -- to put on two humpty dy together again. it is the definition of hegemony when you do well in good times and bad times. i do not think it rises to the
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level of 9/11 and other dates. >> i have a question for bruce, mary, and bill. bruce, i am not clear what your assumptions are about 1989 and 2001. i understand what you are saying about the assumptions of 1945. and as to what you are saying about the realist assumptions. i understand what you are saying about the assumptions about north korea. what are you trying to say about the assumptions of policy makers in 1989 and 2001? essentially, if you are saying -- you are saying something about their assumptions. i would like to have a clear idea about what those assumptions were. mary, my question to you is the following.
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you seem to want to have it both ways. you are saying on the one hand that in the long run, the architecture created in 1989 and 1990 missed the punctuational moment in that it did not provide for long-term satisfactory answers. there is a strong element of your analysis that is critical of the long term architecture created. on the other hand, if you are quick to say that it was the only possible architecture. how do you reconcile these two things? what are the implications of those statements? bill, my question to you is on your third and fourth example
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about iraq. you are critical of scholars. you said the policy makers had it more correct than the scholars in the decision to go to war against iraq. you say the decision makers have more rights and the scholars. -- you say the decision makers had a bit more right than the scholars. use of the scholars said the costs would exceed the benefits. -- you said that the scholars said that the costs will exceed the benefits. i do not know what you say that their views should be reconsidered. their view was that the costs would exceed the benefits and therefore it was not a prudent decision to undertake. it seems that was the correct call. what do you think was not a
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correct call? >> that is a tough question to give assisting to answer to. -- that is a tough question to give 8 cena succint answer to. if you pushed me, i would say that i agree with george temin in 1983 when he said that by 1950, the fundamentals of our relationship with the soviet union and others were hammered out. he expected negotiations. instead, we got the korean war and 40 years of a cold war. in that sense, the sinews of the global system were already in place. it just delays for reckoning
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with the inevitable. the was no way an isolated soviet or communist system could compete with the open systems that the u.s. helped to establish a elsewhere after world war ii. i think it is true that it was like going over niagara falls in a barrel for scholars and policymakers. things unraveled. things started happening that you could get predictions would never happen. one needs to be humbled before a classic case of the counning of history. we had our assumptions happily torn asunder.
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gorbachev was wonderful or hapless depending on how one sees him in relationship to the west. that is not a very good answer to your question. it is a tough question. i think we all need to constantly subject our own basic assumptions and concepts to the examination of the examination of the time. >> thank you for giving me a chance to talk about this war. i realize i may have been unclear in some comments that i made. one of the arguments in the book is that it is a successful response to a punctuational moment and that there is a lot of logic to it. i did talk about the alternative futures that have some
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potential for succeeding. what is crucial is the timing factor. zelikow says it becomes apparent -- helmut kohl is so certain that the slow boat approach will work. he sees there are other ways to unify the germanys. the changes his mind. he goes to dresden in december of 1989. it was his first immersion in the east german revolution. he is everywhere but east germany. he realizes he has a better option. he realizes he to be the chancellor of german unity. there is a massive shift in his rhetoric. before, there is a lot of talk
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about chaos and rhetoric. he says it is so terrible. we must do this. east germany is falling apart we must russian quickly. then he says we must not rush because it could be dangerous. you see the quickening of the tempo. when you see the russians are not able to put the alternatives together, you want to keep them on the back foot. other alternatives are likely. but when you get the quickening of the temple, they become less likely. then you have to do prefab because you do not have time a sense i am about to be quoted back to myself. in the book, i am trying to
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question the notion from bob hutchins. he wrote recently that even 20 years later, it is hard to see how dgerman unification could have been done better. i am trying to offer a point of view from other countries as well. it is not something that the dissidents were pacifists would agree with. and looking at what of terms of the outcomes there were and why they were not viable. >> i did not mean to say that. in the paper, and tried to be careful. there are two different tasks in jailed in assessing -- there are two different tasks in tailentan the assessment.
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with u.s. interests have been better served by a different policy? -- would u.s. interests have been better served by a different policy? would we be better off if we have not expanded nato or if we had iincluded russia in nato? you can fill books with those questions. this is a more limited exercise. i tried to limit it to the more specific forecasts that policy critics made. i tried to limit it to things you can analyze. on that front, if you want to look at a policy criticism that looks better in hindsight, it was the iraq war. the critics said we were emphasizing the costs of a warrant that turned out to be costly. they are emphasizing the difficulty of holding together an iraq turns out to be
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difficult to hold together. they were not talking about several different things. on balance, they look more impressive in hindsight. the specific forecasts look better than some we associate with the government policy. many of the criticisms that loom large in scholarly evaluations, namely the prospect of prolonged counter-insurgency, none of that was figured in the pre-work criticism. we must distinguish it from forecasts. compared to the other group, they looked relatively good in hindsight. the weird thing is on this particular case, they are not the point most of their own previous scholarly investments in theory and research they
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are looking specifically at what we know about whether saddam hussein is rational or not. 90% of the debate was on the gathering storm, that the evidence was sufficient to conclude he cannot be deterred. that is what is that 90% of their time on. interestingly, they did not deploy their general theories were great power analysis. -- they did not apply their general theories for the great power analysis. the scholarly analysis that looks best in hindsight is what was least connected to general explanations. >> time is really running out. i have several people left. i will ask the next two to ask their questions in a row. i apologize if you have a
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question and we did not get to you. he is right there. >> i liked your thought about punctuational moments. what was your term, john? i would like to suggest to the group that one of the big punctuational moments that united states missed was the reaction of the government after the taking of hostages in iran in 1979. i say this because when you look back on the last 30 years, that was a transformational moment. we did so little in that time.
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>> [unintelligible] i was just wondering what explanation you provide if any for why one particular blueprint won out after 1989. do you have anything to say more generally to explain the types of blueprints the likely oto win out. it may not be the blueprint that the scholars are behind. there is likely a viable alternative to that. >> most of the book is used as the organizing framework of the competition going on to establish the world order. that identified what the book was about.
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when i was looking at the proposed models going forward, i tried to imagine scenarios under which the other models could have succeeded that were less likely to succeed in the prefab rigid than the prefab models. the restoration model for occupying powers becomes more likely than an outbreak of violence. . .
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>> it seems that violence was actually instigated by agents themselves in the hopes that this would happen. if you have soviets shooting at germans -- germany has 900,000 troops on its soil, foreign troops, and more nuclear weapons than anywhere else and not under its control and there's the potential for a lot of violence and chaos. you know what else you're going to do if you have bloodshed if you have that. it doesn't happen that thanks largely -- -- but there is a venue by which this happens. the revival federation seems to be viable, becauseñr the whole generation of german leaders
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believe that it might be the idea behind day taunt. he announced ate as policy, so that seemed to be a viable alternative. the heroic model never really crystallizes, so it's harder to judge. but you see similar sentiments throughout the -- throughout eastern europe and the soviet union. one thing that emerged very clearly to me, and this is relevant more generally, not just to 1989, is that there is a real dichotomy between the people who caused the event and the people who shaped the reaction. the people who bring down the wall, end communism, solidarity, eastern protesters, gorbachev, reagan, they didn't shape the post-war. the e.c. is a big part of this. those should be considered as well, the euro is a big part of this story. s if gorbachev had gotten his
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act together with a number of east european leaders, who are pacifists, who wanted the lesson of world war ii to be that central europe should be permanent nently demilitarized, forever become a neutral zone, not just a neutral germany, but a neutral zone. the only crickcally elected leader was strongly opposed to east germany going into nato. his foreign minister resigned. if they had ever gotten their act together and come up with some coherent alternative that perhaps could have gelled. as they pointed out in a breakfast session, we were aware that there were all these other things involved that would make our life difficult. our job was to keep the pace moving. one of the great virtues of prefab is that it's already there. you don't waste any time on conceptualizing, and this is
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the last point. people in the east knew what they were getting and they wanted it. they saw the benefits. they saw the western lifestyle. and when push came to shove in the east german election of march 18, 1990, which by virtue of its timing is really the end game in the commission -- competition, they voted for prefab, because they wanted it. >> can i just say one thing? as a political scientist on the panel, aside from the chair, the most powerful country in the world wanted prefab. the most powerful country in the world wanted prefab. >> prefab it was. thank you very much. let me take the chair's privilege and make one last 30-second comment. this panel and the papers have really helped sharpen something for me. this problem -- i think consensus has emerged about
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prefab or metaphors or social science paradigms dragging down, if you will, providing excessive weight to our analysis when walls come down. assuming we can all agree that a wall is falling, there seems to be a concern on the panel that analysts, academic and policy realm, do not lose sight of what's really happening. really understand that things fundamentally change, of course, this raises the question that has emerged and some of the questions from you, is it possible to make the opposite error, to have no ballast, no weight. can bruce cummings' doll have no sand in it? this, to me, is one of the question that emerges from this analysis. please join me in thanking our three panelists for a fascinating discussion. [applause]
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>> tonight on "america and the courts," encore presentations from c-span's supreme court week special. supreme court journalist lyle denniston and joan biskupic of "usa today" on covering the court, also, former solicitor drew days and maureen maholm knee on arguing before the court, that's tonight, 7:00 p.m. eastern, here on c-span. >> tomorrow on "washington journal," a discussion on u.s. foreign policy with barbara slavin of "the washington times" and jonathan broader. after that, a look at president obama's achievements in his first year in office from stephen helps of the brackings institute and dan thomason. that's live here on c-span starting at 7:5 a.m. eastern.
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in the mid 1990's, he was named one of the most 50 influential people to watch in cyberspace the since then he's completed blackplanet.com, helped found a charter school in brooklyn and explained new technologies on oprah. sunday night he talks about his current studies at harvard and what's ahead on c-span's q&a. >> in just over half an hour, a former british ambassador to the u.s. testifying on british involvement in the war in iraq. but first, a special presentation of our documentary, "the blair house -- the president's guest house" begins. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2009]
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>> the first blair home, the original part, and that where the green awning is, that's the primary entrance. that's where presidents, our own and foreign leaders, arrive and depart from. blair house is now the entire block. today we have about 109 rooms. that's 70,000 square feet. and just to put that into perspective, we are 5,000 square feet larger than the white house is. >> its primary mission is to be a guest home for world leaders that come to visit the president. and it's used for that purpose. and in that mission it has never failed. >> since 1942, just about any
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world leader you can think of has walked through this door. and this is the same marble floor they've all walked across. >> when you first come into blair house, it's easy to look at it and say, wow, this is a wonderful home or a beautiful museum. but it's much more than that. blair house is a tool of diplomacy for the united states. this is a way that the nation really opens its doors to guests that we want to honor in a particular way to say this is our home, we are opening this to you, and you are here as our guest. >> when it was acquired by francis preston blair in 1837, as his reputation built in the city of washington, it eventually became to be called blair's house, and then later on, simply blair house.
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>> the custom has been that the house is offered to an incoming president just before their inauguration, that they would stay here for a period immediately before their inauguration. >> this is the story of a house on pennsylvania avenue, usually eclipsed by its famous neighbor, the white house. guest house for foreign leaders, home to presidential advisors, respite for presidents, temporary quarters for presidents elect. all these describe blair house. >> now you've entered the original blair house, the oldest part of this facility. it was built in 1824. if you had been here on may
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1,1850, you would have been among the wedding party for william sherman, who was married in this room. what's amazing about this house is that everything is still here. the decoration may have changed, the colors may be different, but these are the same walls and the same floors that andrew jackson walked on, that abraham lincoln walked on, and that everybody in-between and since then. >> in the 19th century, because the blares were so politically active, mostly behind the scenes, but prominent, almost all of our political figures -- daniel webster, whose portrait
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is here, henry clay -- were entertained here in this house. >> living here and being of the blair family and so close to the white house, this was one of the main venues for social entertaining between president jackson and lincoln, certainly in van buren's time, maybe a little bit in the beginning of polk's time before their falling out and certainly through andrew johnson's time, as long as he was president. >> and no president took more advantage of that hospitality than abraham lincoln. >> i'm sure that lincoln felt that he could come across the street any time for a chat, and i think that's how blair house really functioned. it could be an escape, it could be a place of privacy where things were not overheard. as far as we know, the president could relax in front of a warm fire with a nice brandy and talk over difficult
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issues and get good, sound advice, as well as a sympathetic shoulder. the last blair to live in the house, when he was just a 4 or 5-year-old boy, remembers abraham lincoln sitting in his father's study off the blair front entrance deep in conversation with their feet propped up on the fireplace mantel. so confidences were still shared. there was a closeness. and certainly the night that robert e. lee was invited by both montgomery blair and his father, francis preston blair, to dinner at blair house, and either over dinner at the blair dining room table and probably continuing into the study with the cigars and the madera, at lincoln's request, francis preston senior and his sons present offered the command of
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the union army to robert e. lee in blair house, in that study. so that is testimony to the blair family influence and power. >> in the center of the wall is a large engraving depicting president lincoln and his cabinet. the oldest blair son, montgomery blair, served in lincoln's cabinet. montgomery is standing on the far right in that image. he was the postmaster general. at that time that was a full cabinet post, which it is not today. under that is a very rare matthew brady photograph of general sherman and his senior advisors. another blair son, frank blair jr., is in that photograph. he was one of the senior advisors. what's phenomenal about this photograph -- and remember, this is civil war photography. matthew brady has superimposed him into the image. frank blair was not present the day it was taken.
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>> a head of state usually only gets to stay here at the invitation of the president. so not every leader that comes to visit the president stays here. it is usually by individuals that are representing countries that we have very good relations with or that we want to have good relations with or we're trying to establish better relations with. when they are guests at blair house, they are guests of the united states, just as they would be at the president's home. it's really the guest house -- we call it the guest house for the president, but it's really the guest house for america. ♪
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♪ >> this house has -- besides being the president's guest house, it has a key role in diplomacy. first of all, it's often a linchpin of a visit of a foreign leader. this is one of the great benefits, as a leader comes to visit with our president, of being able to stay in this house. it is a very important part of our diplomacy. whether this house is offered or not as a place for a leader to stay is often a sign of great respect and great hospitality on our part. one of the most important responsibilities of the protocol office is blair house. if a leader is going to be staying here, well, then we have an assistant chief of protocol, who is the manager of the house, blair house, who
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will actually take care of the party that will be staying here. we have to make sure that our guests are comfortable not just for staying overnight or two nights or three nights, perhaps, but also, that they have to work here as well. this is a base of operations for them, and we want to make sure that they feel entirely comfortable while they're here. >> most of the world leaders who meet with the president want to stay here. there's a very set formula on how the invitation is issued, so there are fewer who get to stay here than want to stay here. >> you don't invite everyone into your home, even if you have a business meeting with  them. but the ones that you do invite into your home are ones that you either want to send a message that you have a very good, solid relationship or you want to build a better relationship.
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>> this is one of the old rooms you will see occasionally in the media. for protocol terms, the lower-ranking person should go to the hire-ranking person for meetings -- higher-ranking person for meetings. and for us, that means that all of the cabinet secretaries come to blair house to meet with prime ministers and monarchs who would be staying here. ♪
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>> the wallpaper in the room, definitely the most striking part of the room. >> that is 18th century hand-painted chinese wallpaper for the export market. it is rice paper, now completely rebacked and restored. that was acquired by kennedy's secretary of the treasury, c. douglas dillon and his wife near westminster, england. the panels were only eight feet high when they arrived from their home in england. here our ceilings were 11 feet high in that room, so the upper portion and lower portion were painted in.
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>> from 1948 to 1952, blair house became a president's home. harry truman and his family moved there because the white house was under renovation. in his biography on truman, david mccullough wrote about the president's temporary quarters. "the house itself, even with the quick cosmetics applied the year before, was not only nothing very grand, but a bit dowdy. it creeked and groaned, trembled noticeably when streetcars passed by outside. its dark old cellar was full of rats, as was well known by the seetervice men who hated ever to go down there. of all the presidents they had known, some of the secret servicemen would later say, only harry truman would have been willing to live in the place." but not everyone felt that way.
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margaret truman remembered it this way in her biography. "i fell in love with the place the moment i walked into it. every room, especially on the first floor, was a little master speaks of architect and decoration. almo3( every piece of furniture was a rare antique from 18th century america or from france. crystal chandeliers gleamed above rugs, magnificent gilt-framed mirrors redoubled the beauty of the drawing rooms and the wood-paneled dining room was utterly charming." >> this house has an unbelievable history much -- of great moments in history, moments where wars were discussed and committed to and peace movements were committed to. >> date, 1950. place, this blair house dining room. president truman and his
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advisors make critical decisions about u.s. involvement in korea. truman biographer david mccullough wrote about it. "that night, after supper alone, truman summoned another emergency session, a second war cabinet meeting at blair house, and decided to provide american air and may haval support to the forces of south korea and to press for immediate united nations support." >> i don't want to go to war, truman said, with a force they would all remember. everything i have done in the past five years, he remarked sadly, as the meeting ended, has been to try to avoid making a decision such as i had to make tonight." ♪
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>> for president truman, this is the temporary cabinet room. many of his meetings were here, even not west wing was not affected by the renovation work, and he did have use of the cabinet room at the white house. this became a convenient cabinet room for him because it was just 20 feet away from where he was sleeping. historically and especially for european guests, this room is incredibly significant, because in this room, at this table, the first concept and the first draft of the marshall plan were created. this is also where the truman doctrine originated. we know that this is where the president signed documents that
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committed american troops to the korean war. out's also where he made the final -- it's also where he made the final decision to fire mcarthur, and it was the scene of many of his famous midnight poker games. during the time that president and mrs. truman lived here, this was their primary dining room. this is where they would have hosted dinner with princess elizabeth, with churchill and count l others. -- countless others. >> sometimes i would have dinner alone. i'd walk into the dining room. one of the butlers was one of my servants, too.
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he would pull out my chair, push me up to the table, bring me a fruit cup. takes away the empty cup. fields brings me a plate. barnett brings me a tenderloin. fields brings me asparagus, barnett brings me carrots and beets. i have to eat alone and in silence in a candle-lit room. ♪ >> this is another very special room to blair house history. this is truman's office.
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the portrait of truman we have is by creda kempton, who also painted the official white house portrait of the president, and she copied her official work specifically for blair house during the reagan renovation of the 1980's. the mantel in this room was a part of the white house. that was installed in the white house during the 1901 renovation.
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during the truman renovation, it was brought to blair house so harry truman would have a visual of the white house during the years that he didn't get to live there. the president's favorite color was green, and the walls were green, the draperies were green, the carpet was green. he had a small desk that sat in the middle of the floor with his back to the fireplace. quite amazing to think about, because you're only feet off of pennsylvania avenue with traffic on the avenue back then, trolley cars were out there then. and here sat the president. ♪ >> this is a sitting room, an open passageway. before 1982, this was the master bedroom of the house,
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and so this would have been president truman's bedroom. this was the window he ran to on november 1, 1950, when he heard gunshots outside and he actually witnessed the gun battle where one of his agents was killed, one of the attackers was killed. >> in 1971, this room was dedicated to president dwight david eisenhower. this is the president's prayer that once hung in the oval office. and these are two oil paintings done by president eisenhower.
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it was an incident in this room that happened in the 1980's that led to the renovation. a telephone call came to the chief of protocol from president reagan's deputy chief of staff. >> he called me one day and said, mrs. reagan, i feel that you must shut blair house down. mike was disturbed, as was mrs. reagan, when she heard that a chandelier had fallen on the principal bed and while the tunisian president was in
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residence, the boiler had blown up. and so that was enough. and also, it was not looking very good. it was really looking a bit raggedy. before the restoration plan, the money had to be approved by the government every year and was summoned to congress, because they didn't want to fund it at all. and senator abner, who was the head of the committee that was being so negative about it said to me, well, mrs. rosa, i don't understand why you have to spend all that money just to do over an old house. he was just very difficult about it. he said, why don't you just tear it down and build a new house? i said over my dead body. finally we worked around this. i was grateful to paul lacks all the, the senator's aunt, who was able -- lacks at, the senator's aunt, who was really able to get it through.
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but there was a very interesting stipulation in the bill. the money was to be used for bricks and more tar, building the new addition, all of that, but not one cent could be allocated for decorating. so what does that mean? obviously, we had to raise it. >> in 1988, blair house reopened. congress had appropriated $8.6 million for the infrastructure improvements. $7 million was raised for decorating by the private blair house preservation fund. on a wall at blair house, several plaques acknowledge large gifts to the fund.
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>> the staff called it the principal suite. this is the private quarters for the president, the prime minister, the king or the queen that's staying with us. two bedrooms, 2 1/2 bathrooms. this is 1988 construction, built to look like the rest of the house. this is fairly new.
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♪ ♪
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>> we always invite you to add another page of history to the blair house guest book. and we're honored to have you in the house for the third time and in the future. thank you. >> the guest book is really one of the great historical pieces in our collection here at blair house. it has every president that has been here, u.s. president, and also every foreign leader that has stayed here. it's a fantastic, fantastic collection of comments from significant world leaders that
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have changed the world through their actions. >> in 1942, there were a series of visits. the king of greece, king george of greece, i believe, king peter, young king peter of yugoslav ya, foreign minister molotov of russia stayed here. winston churchill is there, harry truman and his family, their signatures are there for when they stayed for f.d.r.'s funeral in 1945. blair house is really an important asset in foreign affairs. we want to put our best foot forward. we want to make whoever comes to this country feel welcome and happy to be here. and with a house like that, believe me, it really has a psychological effect.
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>> sometimes there are as many as 25, 26, 30 visits a year, and, of course, some of them go on for three or four days. so it's quite a task. housing leaders, and making sure that every single need they have is met. you know, diplomacy doesn't happen until two people engage. and our staff here is involved in diplomacy. they are all diplomats. and just by nature of what they do, offering personal service and caring about someone who's arriving -- and it's not even on a political level. it's our gracious -- what we hope is our gracious hospitality to a world leader, to a leader from another country. and so it's very personal and meaningful for them. >> the honor is deep and intense, especially times when, you know, we're hosting the president elect before inauguration or whether we are hosting the widow and the
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family of a deceased president for a state funeral. >> president reagan once wrote me a letter and said, "form and substance, the opposite sides of the same coin." and i never forgot that. and we represent form. but to give the visitor a warm welcome in an atmosphere that is really beautiful and not overbearing, but where he can be comfortable or she can be comfortable is our aim. and then maybe the substance will go a little bit smoother. and that's what we aim to do is to set a nice tone for the visit, no matter who it is. even if it's somebody we're not having a good relationship with. maybe that can improve it some,
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because hospitality is very important. ♪ >> in this week's presidential address. president obama and first lady michelle obama mark the holiday season and discuss sacrifice he made by american troops overseas. they are followed by representative duncan hunter of california with the republican response. he also talks about american troops and republicans' priorities in the new year. it's about 10 minutes. >> hello, everyone, and merry christmas. as you and your families gather to celebrate the holidays, we
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want to take a moment to send greetings from our family, from me, from michelle, from malia, sasha, and from beau. >> this is our first christmas in the white house and we are so grateful for this extraordinary experience. not far from here in the blue room is the official white house christmas tree. it's an 18-foot tall douglas fir from west virginia and deck indicated are -- decorated with hundreds of ornaments from children all over the country. it symbolizes the blessings we're thankful for this holiday season. >> that's right. especially as we continue to recover from an extraordinary recession that still has so many americans hurting, parents without a job who struggled to put presents under the christmas tree, families and neighbors who have seen their homes foreclosed and folks wondering what the new year will bring. but even in these tough times, there's still so much to celebrate this christmas. a message of peace and brotherhood that continues to
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inspire more than 2,000 years after jesus' birth, the love of family and friends, the bonds of community and country, and the character and courage of our men and women in uniform who are far from home for the holidays, away from their families, risking their lives to protect ours. to all our soldiers, sailors, airmen, marines and coast guard men, i've been awed by your selfless spirit, your eagerness to serve at the may haval academy and west points. i've been energized from bad dad to the korean peninsula. michelle and i have been moved by your determination, wounded warriors of walter preed and bethesda fighting to recover to get back to your units and i've been humbled profoundly by patriots who have made the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom. and the caskets coming home at
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dover, so the quiet solitude at arlington. after years of multiple tours of duty, as you carry on our missions in iraq and afghanistan, your service, your readiness to make that same sacrifice is an inspiration to us and to every single american. >> and so are your families. as first lady, one of my greatest privileges is to visit with military families across the country. i've met military spouses doing the parenting of two, keeping the household together, juggling play dates and soccer games, helping with home homework, doing everything they can to make the kids feel ok, as they try to hide their own fears and worries. i've met kids who wonder when mom or dad is coming home, grandparents and relatives who step in to care for wounded warriors and folks trying to carry on after losing the person they loved most in the world. and through it all, these families somehow still find the
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time and the energy to serve their communities as well, coaching little league, running the p.t.a., raising money to help those less fortunate than they are and more. but even these strong military families can use a hand, especially during the holidays. if you live near a military base, you can reach out to your workplaces, your schools, your churches. there's so many ways to help. with child care, with errands, or just by bringing over a home-cooked meal. even if you don't know a military family nearby, your family can still help by donating or volunteering at organizations that support military families. >> you can also reach out directly to our forces around the world. kids can make a card that will bring a smile to an american far from home. adults can send a care package or a pre-paid phone card that makes the tour just a little bit easier. every american can do something to support our troops. even fit's as simple as just
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saying thank you. for more ways to let our troops know you care, go to www.white house.gov. to all our men and women in uniform spending the holidays away from home, whether it's at a base here in the states, a helps hall in iraq or an outpost in afghanistan, know that you are in our thoughts and in our prayers, and this holiday season and every holiday season, know that we are doing everything in our power to make sure you can succeed in your missions and come home safe to your families. >> and to all americans from our family to yours, merry christmas. >> merry christmas, everybody. >> i'm congressman duncan hunter, and i represent the 52nd congressional district of california, the area around san diego. in this holiday season, i hope we all take time to offer thanks and prayers to the men and women of the armed forces. many will spend the holidays away from home on the front lines in iraq and afghanistan,
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at bases and on ships around the world. i understand that sacrifice -- the sacrifices they are making. i quit my job and joined the marine corps shortly after 9/11. i was deployed to war zones on three separate occasions, twice in iraq and once in afghanistan. just last month, actually, i had an opportunity to visit with our troops in afghanistan. i know we all wish everyone could be home for the holidays, but this is not a time for sadness or regret. thoughts of home remind us of why we serve, because we're proud to be americans, because we want to pass on to our children the blessings of liberty that we inherited from our forefathers, and because nothing matters more to us in protecting our homes and our families. our hope is that as a result of this determination and sacrifice, we will never again see our cities and citizens under attack. i hope we also take a moment this year to reflect on those suffering here at home. for too many families, this will be a difficult christmas.
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one in 10 americans are unemployed. nearly 6 million of our citizens have been looking for work for more than six months, the most on record. all year long republicans have offered common-sense solutions to put more money back into the pockets of hard-working false and to help small businesses create more jobs. we've also outlined a plan to lower health care premiums by up to 10% and we have proposed an all of the above energy strategy to create more american jobs, ease the strain on family budgets and clean up our environment. just as important, these solutions do not raise taxes, grow government or add to the already skyrocketing debt burden being placed on our kids and grandkids. after all the promises and spending we've seen out of washington this year, out-of-work families are right to be asking, where are the jobs? republicans believe our top priority when it comes to the economy should be simple -- first, do no harm. so let's resolve in the new
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year to end misguided efforts to create new laws that will cost even more jobs, whether it's the cap and trade energy tax, the government takeover of health care, card check or even more tax increases. working together, we can make the next holiday season even brighter for all americans. thank you, happy holidays, and god bless america. >> tomorrow on "washington journal," a discussion on u.s. foreign policy with barbara slavin of "the washington times" and jonathan broder of c.q. weekly. after that, a look at president obama's achievements in his first year in office with stephen hess of the brookings institute. that's live at 7:00 a.m. eastern here on c-span. >> in the mid 1990's, "newsweek" named him one of the 50 most influential people to watch in cyberspace. since then, he's created the social networking site blackplanet.com, helped found a charter school in brooklyn and explained new technologies on oprah.
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sunday night he talks about his current studies at harvard and what's ahead on c-span's q&a. >> former british ambassador christopher meyer testified before a committee examining the circumstances which led to the 2003 invasion of iraq. mr. meyer served as ambassador from 1997 through 2003 and authored the book "d.c. confidential," which received criticism from the british government. the former ambassador talked about his relationship with members of the bush administration and 10 downing street. in his testimony, he told members it was pointless to resist the u.s. charge to war.
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>> well, welcome, everyone. just a few opening remarks. the purpose of this session is to examine developments in the united states policy towards iraq between 2001 and 2003 and the u.k.'s response, and we're continuing this theme in hearings next week. i think i should emphasize that the focus of the inquiry is, of course, on the united kingdom government decisions, actions and policies. but to understand that, it's important also to understand the development of united states policy and the interaction between them. so this session will cover foreign policy priorities and decision-making processes in the u.s. administration in the
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period, the evolution of policy on iraq and the middle east in washington from 2001 until early 2003, including the decision to take military action in march, 2003, and the u.k.'s relationship with the united states over the period. i'd like to make two general points, again, as before each session, to recall that the inquiry has access to many thousands of governmentçó paper including the most highly classified for the period we're considering, and we are developing the picture of the policy debates and the decision-making process. these evidence sessions are important in informing the inquiry's thinking and complementing the documentary evidence. it's important that witnesses are able to be open and frank in their evidence while respecting national security, and i remind every witness that they will be later asked to sign a transcript of their evidence as to the effect that
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the evidence they have is truthful, fair and accurate. and we have with us today christopher meyer, who was our ambassador in washington throughout the period and discussion this morning. >> good morning, and i apologize for my delay in coming. the reasons were beyond my control. >> thank you. without further adieu, we'll have the first question. >> my first question relate to the election of president bush. i wonder if you could tell us briefly what you learned yourself during those months of the views of the senior members of the incoming administration, in particular, donald rumsfeld, district cheney, colin powell and condoleezza rice with regard to iraq. >> well, it wasn't until fairly late in the day in that year that we knew who were going to
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occupy the chief's positions in the bush administration. so until that became clear, to find out what was going on, what was being planned, it became necessary to speak to members of a group who were known informally as the vulcans. the vulcans were a group of american advisors who advised george w. bush when he was the presidential candidate. and when i went down to texas in early 1999, which was shortly before he declared himself as a candidate, he said to me with much frankness, i don't know much about foreign policy, i'm going to have to learn pretty damn fast, and one of the things i'm going to do is surround myself with good people. and the good people turned out to be this group, called the vulcans, led condoleezza rice and paul wolfowitz, who has become deputy secretary for defense. so my team and i folk tussed on
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this group. and after 2000 went by, certain policies began to take shape. and i think the most definitive account that i had of where the bush administration was likely to go -- and always bear in mind before 9/11, was a conversation with condoleezza rice at the british assembly, if i remember right, december 6, 2000, followed by a conversation with karl rove, who was president bush's chief political strategist at that time. >> i already had instructions in london to put in a few fixes on how we wanted certain things to develop. and i have to say to you that
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iraq and the middle east did not feature very prominently in this account of where bush's priorities would lie. there was an enormous focus on russia. not russia as russia, but on nuclear and missile defense and what was going to happen to the treaty, which she and later the president would make, i think, top foreign policy goal of the period before 9/11. on iraq, i just wanted to say a little more in context about iraq. but on iraq, it was we need to look at this. things aren't going well. the policy of sanctions is in tatters. the smuggling -- smugglers are getting away with blue murder and we need to do something about that. so i suppose the batting order there was nuclear missile defense, russia in that context, not a lot about the
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middle east. i remember her saying to me, we don't want president bush to become the middle east desk officer, like bill clinton. because clinton was in the final throes of trying to fix the problem, which eventually failed. nor were they intent on doing that into northern ireland either. so we got a heavily missile centric account of foreign policy. two days later -- i think it was two days later, i saw karl rove, and he more or less gave me the same account, but emphasizing that as with most presidents of the united states in the first few months, you focus on other things other than foreign policy. there was going to be tax cuts, health care for senior citizens. >> it's interesting that in your book, "d.c. confidential," you write in the first few months about colin powell, that
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he was always skeptical about belligerent notions of dealing with salaam hughes. -- saddam hussein. >> well, it focused on financing iraqi dissident groups. if you went up on the hill, as we did quite frequently, what you would hear from republican senators and their staff was there's some really good dissident groups out there. we need to finance them and arm them and shake saddam's foundations. now, the group of choice was something called the i.n.c., the iraqi international congress. most of the members seemed to be located in london and who were led by tal bee talabi.
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and he and his people were really in opposition to hemolytic uremic syndrome. they would -- despite a -- opposition to saddam hussein, and that they should be able to do the trick. if you went to the state department, in particular, colin powell and his deputy, they would say the i.n.c. is no good, we shouldn't rely on them. but that was the belligerent trend running through the administration before 9/11. let's focus on the opposition. meantime -- and this was the greater strand of the two, if you like -- the focus, particularly from colin powell, was on what we termed in london "narrowing and deepening sanctions." for a variety of reasons. sanctions itself was pretty tepid. the process of approvals in new york had become totally consty pated. there was a heavy propaganda
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against them and saddam hussein was saying the children and women were suffering from sanctions, and a lot of people bought into this. so we felt uncomfortable, both for technical reasons, the sanctions weren't doing their job, and also, because it was being used as a stick to beat us around the head. to the late robin cook focused for whatever it was, eight, nine months, on trying to do narrowing and deepening and they failed. >> after the visit to washington, which, of course, you were there, what was his input at that time with regard to the sanctions debate? >> he had -- i didn't want to say this, but somewhat to my surprise, struck up an extremely good relationship with colin powell very quickly. powell had come to london in either 1999 or 2000 to give a kind of motivational speech to
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the minister of defense on how you handle diversity in the armed forces. and this had gone down a storm. and in the margins of that event, he and robin cook met in a london hotel and had a very good conversation. i remember powell coming back and sailing, that robin cook, i know i can do business with him. this is a good, good guy. . .
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maybe i'm anticipating a question, in which case i apologize, but to understand the context, it has to be emphasized that the regime change in iraq was from united states policy, and went back to the iraq unification act of 1998, when the bill was passed unanimously by the senate, passed overwhelmingly by the house of representatives, signed into law by bill clinton in october of 1998. so regime change, and to quote the act, to establish a program toward democracy and iraq, was
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an official american policy which george bush inherited from bill clinton. he was a little bit knocked about by monica lewinsky and the impeachment business, but that was the policy that george bush inherited. sometimes people say to me, well, it was the administration with right-wingers. absolutely wrong. it was inherited from the democratic administration, as were a number of other policies as well. >> this time you are stressing that regime change was using the iraqi policy. where there groups who said actual military force was being discussed? >> i think so. it was not actually discussed as such, but it is very hard to
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judge. paul wolfowitz, the defense secretary, who was the leading neo-con in the u.s. administration, very fluent in the intelligence, very affluent in the world and where america should deploy her power, and i remember him saying that when i first arrived in washington, he said, what we should do is we should invade southern iraq, seize the oil fields, base ourselves in bosworth, and from there launch raids against saddam hussein and little by little we will bring the regina down. -- will bring the regime down. that was the extreme fringe. but that as a policy between
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inauguration day and 9/11, i do not think it ever got into the mainstream of the u.s. administration debate. it continued to focus on at narrowing and deepening sanctions and what could we do about the taliban. >> when you were preparing for the visit of our prime minister to camp david to see president bush in february, what briefing were you given in regard to the dynamic within the administration from the sanctions supporters to the wild men, if you like? >> camp david was february 22- 24. iraq was not dramatically on their agenda. one of the best things ever, a fantastic job assembling this, i have not been able to find to
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refresh my memory the four or five telegrams that i sent from the inaugural visit to refresh my memory of the wisdom or otherwise of this. but before the meetings, this is what diplomats do, rice and i decided to clear away as much of the foreign policy as possible in advance so that the president and the prime minister could concentrate on creating a strong personal relationship. condoleezza rice said to me, the main purpose of this meeting is bonding. it we want the president and prime minister to bond well, because she was saying at the time that the united kingdom, they were at the united states most important friend and ally and it was important to get along.
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so the two foreign policy issues at that moment that or at the top of the agenda were at north korea and the anti-nuclear missile defense, that was their concern, and we and our part were developing the initiative between france and the united kingdom on building up european defense. so we on the british side had enormous concern -- and this was also inherited from bill clinton, the notion of a nuclear missile defense. it does not spring from lloyd's of george w. bush. we were very worried that if the americans went gung-ho with the treaty and started dismantling some of the kyoto peace accord, this could unravel the
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relationship with russia and have all kinds of repercussions. then there was the anxiety that in developing the european defense initiative with the french that we had been seduced in some way by an incredibly fronting -- incredibly cunning friend that would run into a trap of undermining nato. we came up with a joint draft declaration to put these anxieties to bed, and that was finalized at camp david by the foreign policy adviser and by a rice herself. this was the top of the treaty. one of the things i would say, if i remember correctly from one of the briefings, this is something we need it to do to diffuse -- to defuse this well in advance.
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otherwise, the kinds of things that we need to talk about are the middle east, the middle east much more than an iraq at the time. >> sanctions were on the agenda, but not something that -- >> no, it was not a huge item. it was a long discussion of russia. at the time, i think tony blair was the european leader who think had the most face time with putin. bush was very keen to download his assessment of putin. we spent a long time on that. iraq came up at the beginning, really, almost to be dismissed. the final problem was that colin powell was at camp david and had to go, and as soon as the prime
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minister and the president sat down for lunch and had it five minutes between them, the president immediately asked tony his assessment, where things were in the region, and what we needed to do about iraq. the rest of the agenda did not come back at that particular summit. >> you mentioned bonding, and that is an important question. how would you characterize the impression made at that camp david summit by each of the leaders on each other? then, looking forward with your experience, meeting with the general, how did they relate to each other? particularly with regard to iraq and the middle east policy? >> the massive anxiety that i had was after the extraordinary
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close relationship between george w. -- sorry, between tony blair and bill clinton, that changing gears to a republican administration with george w., in particular, would be very difficult and that the american relationship may suffer as a result. so the bonding business was terribly important. the americans themselves i think recognize this. i was actually quite anxious about it. i have asked after the american election finally became clear, after the supreme court had its verdict, i asked rove and rice separately, it is it a fact that tony blair had an enormously close relationship with the democratic president, would be a problem for us? in each case, the similar answer was basically, it is a good
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thing for the world that britain and america are good. that is not a problem for us. as for the future, it is by your work shell ye -- shall ye be known. we're starting with a blank sheet of paper. i recall it asçó such an emblematic moment, sitting face- to-face at the lunch table at camp david, very informal, and there was a minimum of ceremony. a minimum. the president said, hello, tony. may i call you tony? he says, hello, george, may i call you george? what are we going to talk about? he sort of sensed as the time
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developed that would ever happened in policy, whatever substantial issues to challenge them, that these men were going to get on. that is exactly what happened. they had a very good weekend together. the best conference was probably when they had the colgate moment, which you may remember, the press conference that did not do justice to the nature of the relationship, which was promising. as we look at what happened from that moment until june of that year, they met at various international meetings from time to time, my memory is a little confused, but i remember them
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saying the president just got back and the only person he talked to was tony. it was a slow leak warming relationship all through -- it was a slowly warming relationship all through that era. >> i just have to more questions. during that time, focusing on iraq, where their members of the administration that you were talking to at that time who were beginning to contemplate removing saddam hussein with force? >> i did not see that emerging from the interagency policy at all. every now and then, one would say, either price or colin powell, that would say how is iraq going? ñithey were still talking about it. it was not going anywhere. frankly, you look at the time,
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particularly after summer break, early september, it looked like the bush and administration as a whole was not going anywhere. it lost a sense of direction very rapidly. i remember sending a telegram on the 10th of september, i think we were about to have a visit from john. scott, and this was a briefing to him, to say this is an administration that seems to be running out of steam, losing a sense of direction. >> you write these generally on a whole range of policy? >> sorry, i am compressing things. what happen domestically was an immense political effort. bush put most of his political capital on those months in getting a big tax cut through congress and getting benefits
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and prescription medicine for senior citizens. but they were pyrrhic victories. come september, 2001, before 9/11, everybody was saying that it was killed. rumsfeld, there was a huge bear market, and rumsfeld, he was not seem to be reorganizing the department of defense, he was lost in details, so the story went. there was a big bear market with colin powell narrowing and deepening what he was doing in the middle east, and there was a cataclysmic market because the secretary was about to be dismissed. on the very eve of the great atrocity, it looked like an administration that got into
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trouble very quickly. >> and iraq did not figure into this much if at all? ñi>> not very much. >> i would like very much to know your view, your perception of what was happening in iraq and the no-fly zone and the subsequent developments. sticking to the iraq policy, what you saw? >> yes, i completely forgot the no-fly zone. the no-fly zone had been a problem under the clinton administration. people started getting anxious about two things. one was, does a plane actually get shot down, what do you do? what reaction is there, what reaction did you come up with? also, the worry about the legality.
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typically, the law appeared be on the americans' side. if i remember rightly, this anxiety about how long we could sustain it no-fly zones and stay within the law was a rising concern throughout 2000. but if your question is, what do the americans think of themselves if an airplane is shot down, we will invade and overthrow saddam hussein, it was not in their category, it was not in theñi context we were talking about. >> would there be retaliation? >> if they shot down one of our planes, it could happen. we had worries, not only about the no-fly zones themselves and the legitimacy of aircraft
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overflying, but we were very much concerned by the proportionality, and the legal sense of the word, of any retaliation. >> so a restraining from the legal crisis? >> i suppose so, but we were never put to the test. thank god it never happened. >> i suppose the real question is,ñr at what point after 9/11 o the policy specifically toward iraq change and sharpened? >> again, i cannot find any record of this in the archives. on 9/11 itself, in the course of the day, i had a telephone conversation with rice. and condolences, anything we can do to help, who do you think did
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it. she said, there is no doubt this was an al qaeda operation. the end of the conversation was we were looking to see if there was any connection with saddam hussein. that was the very first time on that day itself that i heard the name of the iraqi leader mentioned in the context of 9/11. as has been recorded by multiple sources, most of them american, that little reference to saddam hussein in that conversation, by the following weekend, turned into a big debate at camp david between president bush and his principal advisers. the big thing about iraq, and i briefed various contacts in the story varied with who you talk to, but it seemed that paul
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wolfowitz to was there, though he was not a cabinet member, defense secretary, he was there with rumsfeld, and he argued for retaliation that would include iraq. it is not clear from the record if this was supported by rumsfeld. some say he was staunchly behind it, others say he was not. but the decision taken that weekend was that the prime concern was al qaeda. it was al qaeda in afghanistan, and iraq, whatever the policy would be, had to be set aside for the time being. that is i believe would tony
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blair was told when he arrived a few days later for a meeting with the president. blair was extremely concerned that the reaction to al qaeda, anything against al qaeda, would become dissipated by looking at iraq at the same time. he had sent bush a message, setting out what needed to be done, his views, and he argued very strongly on a focus on al qaeda in afghanistan. by the time he got to washington, he found the door case. the president had made that decision. >> we talked earlier about the relationship between the prime minister and the president, or perhaps between the prime minister and the americans generally. at his speech, the labor party
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conference in october, he spoke very strongly. he said we are with you at first, we will stay with you till last. i was wondering about the speech, what it said, what it implied, how did it affect your own work in terms of working the the administration -- of working with the administration, especially when iraq came back onto the agenda? >> in those few weeks after 9/11, tony blair's reputation in the united states of america was sealed, continues to this day. the man, above all the europeans, who came first out of the slip and to express his sympathy for, support for the united states of america it in its time of need, with unparalleled eloquence. that speech in that particular
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phrase that you just quoted resonated enormously around the united states. it was whether it was that or the coldstream guards changing of the guard planned the stars and stripes, which condi rice said made her write down and cry. so the ambassador of the united states of america, in the slipstream of his staff, was, i make no bones about it, a heady and exhilarating experience. people would rise to your feet and give you a storming round of applause. you have to be careful not to be swept into that. >> what was your perspective on the relationship of the other
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figures in britain, the minister of defense, the prime minister's office, and their american opposites in the aftermath of 9/11? did they have the knowledge needed of american policy to influence it, again, it essentially when iraq emerged? >> well, we were sending an enormous amount of the device back to london on how the situation was moving and what we thought were the important issues and the different positions, the different bits of the administration. because even in the time leading up to 9/11, it became plain -- i am not sure if this is to your point, but i will say it anyway, it had already become plain that
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there was a potential problem between colin powell on the one side and the vice president, dick cheney, and the defense secretary donald rumsfeld on the other. and this became on iraq policy and even bigger policy the fault line that ran through the administration, the fault line that was never recovered and opened even wider as the time went by. one of our principal purposes, even if we did not deal directly with foreign policy, was to say, in the state department, remember, a lot of people around the administration are his political enemies, and that begs
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the question about what is condoleezza rice in all of this? i think if you plot a graft through the months and years after the iraq war, you have to say that she was more in the camp of colin powell's enemies, although she actually did not see her role of banging heads together. she chaired the meetings of the principal committees. one of the complaints from a lot of people was the agenda was not reaching a proper conclusion because it was impossible to reconcile the views of the big beasts on the agenda. have i answered your question? >> you have. really, what i want to know now, what was your brief including with regard to this fall on an
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american policy, and how did you feel that could influence it? >> if you were talking about powell, rice, cheney, and rumsfeld, there were very few ministers who came over who actually merit that access. by definition, that includes the president as well, the foreign secretary. he always got in to see cheney, but did not actually always good to see rumsfeld. -- did not actually go to see rumsfeld. what i would actually say to the minister's on whatever aspect of iraq policy, if the state department is on board, you have to argue very fiercely with the vice-president office and if
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they want to see rumsfeld, with his office, and also with condoleezza rice how one port in these matters are. the one thing that ran all through 2002 was if it came to war in iraq, we would all be in much better shape for the war itself and the aftermath if it is done within the framework of an international coalition, blessed by the administration. with the vice-president and rumsfeld, andñi up to a point wh condoleezza rice. >> that brings me over to my last question, and brings me to crawford, april, 2002. what i would like to ask you is this -- what extent did american and british policy forces merge in 2002 along the lines that you suggested during that weekend at
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the crawford ranch? in particular, bush's commitment at that time to follow the u.n. inspectors route and also by constructing an international coalition, which was the prime minister's strong input? how do you feel about that converging policy at the time? >> if we're talking about americans, the president accepting for real politic reasons that it would be better to go through the united nations, which was a repudiation where the vice president stood, it took a while. i sent in my briefings to them, to tony blair, before crawford, which i could not get a hold of in the archive, a said, by that time, it had been a couple of
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months, three months, in which contingency discussion of if it came to war in iraq, how would we do it. it was all very, very embryonic. of course, regime change was a form of policy of the united states of america, and that did not necessarily mean it armed invasion at that time of iraq. it may sound like a distinction without a difference, but it was not at the time. as i remember, i said to tony blair, there are three things you really need to focus on when you get to crawford. one is how to garner international support for a policy of ritchie in change, if that is what it turns out to be -- for a policy of regime change, if that is what it turns out to be. if it is removing saddam hussein, how do you do this.
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and the last thing i said, which became kind of a theme of up virtually all the reporting and sent back to london that year, was, above all, and i think i use that phrase, "of all," get them to focus on the aftermath. because of it comes to war, what is next? and the other thing at that time, which people tend to forget, actually what was blazing hot at the time, far more immediate problem, it was not iraq, it was the middle east. hideous things were going on it on the west bank, the israeli army was on the west bank, and we had prevailed upon the americans as one of the influences working there to put out a really tough statement before tony blair arrived in crawford, telling the israelis that they needed to withdraw from the west bank and soon.
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now, but maybe quite frank about this, crawford was a meeting at the president's ranch. i took no part in any of the discussions, and there was a large chunk of that time when no adviser was there. when david comes in, he will tell you. he went there for a discussion about israel. itñi was at that meeting that it was a joint decision between bush and belair that colin powell should go to the region and sorted out. i believe after that, the two men worked at the ranch until dinner where all the advisers turned up. i am not entirely clear to this day, to this day i am not entirely clear what degree of
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convergence was it, if you like, signed in blood at the crawford ranch. that includes the speech that tony blair gave the next day at college station, one of his best foreign policy speeches, a very fine piece of work. >> is there a sense in that speech between potential preemption and the wind rolling in iraq? -- and the united nations ruling in iraq? >> i think there was a lot of interest in the speech. we came from a logical analysis. to the best of my knowledge, i may be wrong, this was the first time tony blair had said in public, "regime change." and it's not only deal with iraq, they dealt with other international issues as well,
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but to draw lessons of 9/11 and apply them to the situation in iraq, we are committed to inflation -- to inflation of osama bin laden and saddam hussein. it also drew on the 1999 chicago speech on policy intervention. when i heard that speech, i thought, it represents a tightening of the u.k.-u.s. alliance, and the degree of convergence on the danger that saddam hussein presented. compare and contrast with that subject of discussion yesterday,
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which came up, what you had in that speech at college station was a rather sophisticated argument which said, which was preemption, which said that saddam is too dangerous, his record is too bad. the potential threat he presents cannot be ignored. i think doing nothing is not an option, was the phrase in the speech, and so we have to do something about it. it was a good speech. ñibut it's sort of lost influene as the months went by. >> thank you very much. i>> i would like to come back to crawford, butñi before i doñi si would like to go to the point that you made now. talking about the summer of 2000, when you said that the anywhere, and the timing of the
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administration at the time was not going anywhere, that was a time in which britain and the that the state's tried it and at the time did not succeed to get a smart sanctionsçó resolution through the u.n. security council. the efforts at that stage failed in july of that year. ñiindeed, the indication in your ñiremarks that this wasi not rey a serious exercise from the point of view of the u.s. administration? >> i think it was a serious exercise. i think it was a very serious exercise. i know that colin powell took this extremely seriously. ñihe put a vast amount of energy into it. one of the reasons people were speculating in september was because he had expanded so much energy and came back with virtually nothing. i would not say that american efforts in this respect or half-
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hearted. what day and we could not get xdaround -- what they could not aroundñi was what we wanted to t in the new security council resolution. then there were difficulties in the committee that reviewed embargo items. there was a day row about the items. -- there was a day row about items. there was also a conceptual problem with the united states, that you had to construct something which makes the sanctions smarter, threatens saddam hussein with dire consequences if he tries to subvert the sanctions or circumvent them, but also extends a light at the end of the tunnel if against all prognostications he became
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virtuous and came into the plan with new resolution. the americans were acknowledging that there would need to be some kind of incentive to use a bomb in a resolution -- it would have to be some kind of incentive to saddam hussein if he came to a resolution. i>> did colin powell have the full backing of the white house? >> i do not think there were very interested. condi race was a very diligent person and i think she was briefed by colin, but it was clearly colin powell postgame. here is the ball, run with it. see how far you get with it. >> the other game was regime
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change, which was established u.s. policy inherited from the clinton administration. but the key fault line was whether this was a policy that was actually going to be implemented, and how. at what point, and clearly this was after 9/11, did the most administration settle on a policy of the forcible removal of saddam hussein's regime as their primary objective? >> i think almost very -- after the shock of 9/11 had sunk in, once that anthrax scare was gone, this followed the months after 9/11. this was something when iñi wasn
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washington, i did not give enough importance to, i did not realize what impact this had on the administration, the anthrax scare, suddenly people were getting letters take it with anthrax. what we now know, and i did not realize at the time, they thought the last people to ever use anthrax aggressively was saddam hussein and his own country. anthrax letters going all over the place really spooked people. if you read a book by joshua viceberg called "the bush tragedy," this is set out in detail and it led to dick cheney suggesting that the entire population of the united states be inoculated for smallpox. to answer your question, well before the end of the year,
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those who had been arguing on the right wing that there was a need for settling accounts with saddam hussein, do it fast, it suddenly got much more traction with the president of the united states. the president himself, as commander in chief of the war against terrorism, suddenly was reinvigorated and found a real 3 purpose for his presidency, something which had not been apparent before 9/11. ñii think there was a mention in that boat where it is said it, it is almost as if people who really wanted to deal with iraq and deal with it soon would burst out of the closet, the closet door having been blown open by the shock of 9/11. everything changed after 9/11. >> certainly, by the time the president gave his state of the union address in january, 2002,
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the access of the full speech, -- the axis of evil speech, he had decided at this point that the officially mandated policy of regime change shouldñr be actively pursued. at this stage, what was the british government's policy? >> the policy was oneñr of profound legal objection to it. gene change and a belief -- legal objection to regime change, and a belief that it was not realistic to seek to overthrow saddam hussein. i say that slightly cautiously, because i remember in exchange between the british delegation
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with condoleezza rice and a visit that we've paid to washington, which we have not mentioned so far, to see members of the administration. we're talking about january, 2001, and we provided for them to meet a very wide range of people. one of those meetings was with rice and there was a brief exchange about. . i remember john sort sing, -- saying, it is not practical, something we could do. she said, hang on a minute, we should not take this option off the table. the next remark was in the context of iraqi dissident groups, it was not a land invasion or anything like that. we had a legal problem with regimeçó change, and at the time
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the british government efforts were stillxd focusedñi on this narrowing and deepening sanctions policy that was dying before our very eyes. >> that was in january 2001. in january, 2002, the british government was still trying to contain. >> the policy was not to abandon containment, but the knowledge that iraq was under active discussion in washington the way that had been the case before signal that we were picking up from our military advisers in the british embassy that the thinking was not going ahead on iraq, that rumsfeld had been tasked to think about thisñr, ad the gentleman in charge of central command was told to look at all this. that started wheels turning, i believe, inside that at the
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time we had the first meeting between the president and the prime minister, which was in april of 2002. they were not there to talk about containment or sharpening sanctions. there had been a sea change in attitudes in the u.s. administration, to which the british government progressively from october 1 was apt to adapt and make up its mind where it stood. >> so at what point between october 2002 and crawford -- sorry, october 2001 and crawford and april 2002 did your instructions change from the should be advocating containment to the british government supported regime change? >> i got a chunky set of instructions in march of 2002,
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instructions from -- from -- very good question. no. 10 downing street. by that time, the prime minister's foreign policy adviser, he was in washington on the very night before 9/11 to meet condoleezza rice and others to break himself in as the foreign minister -- foreign policy adviser. david manning came over in march of 2002 with a set of instructions to prepare the way for the prime minister meeting and crawford, which was to take place on april 6, 7, and eight. one of the main things that he was seeking to do, and this was new,ñr and i, if you like,
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borrowed his instructions to do my side of things was to say to the americans, look, if you want to do it regime change, this is going to require military action. you guys are powerful enough to do it on your own. you have the power to do it. but if you are going to do this, and you want your friends and partners to join you, it is far better than it that you should do itñi inside an alliance, preferably taking the u.m. -- the u.n. that was the single most important message delivered to the united states at that time. david manning said a number of things to condoleezza rice, spoke to her on that, and then a few days later i was responsible for dropping the second shoeñr d
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had paul wolfowitz to launch and i went through the same script with him. an account of which, highly classified, sent to three people in london and in due course went to the sunday telegraph, a photograph facsimile. wolfowitz was viscerally hostile to the united nations. i had to come up with a set of arguments because he might find just about appealing enough not to become a serious obstacle to policy that would involve theñr un >> are you effectively saying that the british government's policy was changed in washington rather than london? it was in washington that our lives had changed, not that we sat down and said this would be the correct strategy? >> i would not say that it was
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extremely who wish. one of the things you have to remember is tony blair is a true believer about the weakness of saddam hussein, and his realization of that predates by a very long time the arrival of george bush in the white house. >> the policy of the government or himself? >> can i read you something? this is a speech, just a paragraph. this is a speech that tony blair made in january, 1998. 1998, which is early. areas, prime minister for a year. "we have a clear responsibility and long-term interest of the world to stop saddam hussein from gentrifying the world's community. he needs to be persuaded by diplomacy or made by forced to
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yield out his long cherished ambition to have chemical and biological weapons, which are a danger to the middle east and a challenge on world peace. all our experience of him teaches us that it is sometimes hard to succeed within diplomacy. one thing is for sure, diplomacy has noñi chance of success at al unless he knows if he fails to listen to reason, we have the force to back it up." i never saw any evidence over the years that i was in washington that that fundamental you ever changed. i think in see things and hear things said by tony blair that reflect that exactly. i read that to try to set the context. >> effectively, he said that containment by the early part
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of 2002 was a dead duck. where did this leave the policy? did it mean that as far as the americans were concerned, it was simply now only a question of when a rather than whether military action would be taken? war was the united states administration still looking at other options? -- or was the united states administration still looking at other options? >> the way i have always tried to approach thisñi, and still gives me reason to think about this even today, is at what point was it clear that war was inevitable. ñiis that the same question? because that is a >> hard question to answer. what was inevitable -- because that is a damn hard question to answer. what was inevitable is to carry out the mandated policy of regime change.
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>> i am asking if they let themselves with any alternatives. >> to regime change? >> to taking military action to affect regime change? >> remember a discussion with condoleezza rice in november, 2002. it was a point to the passage of resolution 1441 and on december 7, saddam hussein's declaration' of weapons of mass destruction. xdi said what everyone to do, ws a possible to turn it around or not. she said to me, -- i said what are your priorities. she said the best outcome would be the pressure of course of diplomacy, plus the troop buildup and contingency
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planning led to saddam hussein's removal. either he goes in exile or he is overthrown by an internal coup. that was always an alternative running in the minds of the administration. the second worst option she said was to be constantly jerked around. so i said, war is a more in the middle between those. she said, fair and fair enough. so it was always an option. there was always the option of all the stuff that was going on that it would create reactions inside of iraq itself that would lead to saddam hussein's removal. >> let's pursuit the united nations ankle. when you had your celebrated luncheon with wolfowitz, he said
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what was needed was a clever plan which should include putting the united nations at the heart of this strategyñi it needs to demand the readmission of the u.n. weapons inspectors. if he refused, this would not only put him in the wrong but also shed light on the security council resolutions which he remained in breach of. now, perhaps i think stewart the eloquence and the british government's persuasion and also the president and colin powell, by the autumn of 2002, president bush had gone to the u.n., endorsing the strategy of going down the debt it nation's route, and this leads to the new security council resolution. was that just an exercisexd to wrong said on the same? >> -- to ron saddam hussein?
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>> it was more than that. you have to remember who i was talking to. i had to put it in those cynical terms to persuade him this was not a limited, pitiful european lack of treaty, which the europeans are frequently accused of by the americans, of actually having a plan to get the guy. up had been talking to somebody elseñi -- had i been talking to somebody else, i would said if we go to work, this thing will be incredibly perilous. what we need to do is refreshed the old security council resolution, particularly the resolutions six under 78 and
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687, but only if we can convince the u.n. and get a security council resolution to provide that. then you no longer have to worry about regime change because you have provided saddam hussein through this security council resolution with a set of things he has to do, which if he does not do, he is wrong foot it, and then you could take action. and actually that is exactly what 1441 did. unanimously, thanks to the astonishing skill of general greene stock in new york and others, we had a resolution which puts all the onus on saddam hussein to prove his innocence. as i looked back on the conversation now with wolfowitz, that is what i
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thought we had to do, and for a moment that is what we got on november 5, 2002. it all fell apart, but that is what we got. if we were to go to war with iraq, that was the best trajectory to follow. ñinow, the british played some role in influencing george bush against the wishes of his vice- president. tony blair's pressure and others all played a part in this, and i think pressure from david manning and myself. ]=h played a part. i suspect, though, that the greater part was played by a combination in this case of condoleezza riceñi and colin powell, who in a very private supper with the president on the fifth of august made theçó casef
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taking the international route, the un that route. the president, and i heard some people say this, sometimes he is ruled by his heart, sometimes he was ruled by his head, and it would come in conflict sometimes. he wanted to just get over there and kick saddam hussein out. he realized he could not just do that. he submitted to the recommendations of the national security adviser and his secretary of state with the course of the europeans and the australians, of who tony blair was the most significant, that he would give the u.n. route a go. he told tony blair and others that is what he was going to do. but that was a start of a battle of attrition, where one defensive position after
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another directive by the vice- president office had be overcome to get resolution 1441. >>ñi at this point, even if it ñionly lasted five minutes, in november,ñiñi 2002, british and american policy have come together with support from the security council, in favor of putting this back into it. >> they had already agreed before 1441 -- >> under pressure, and the resolution that watches it. -- and the resolution watches it. were the british and american governments aiming for the same target through those inspections? you talk about this war of attrition in washington.
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were that americans aiming for regime change and the british for the disarmament of saddam hussein? >> the americans acknowledged that if saddam hussein were to have a conversion and reveal and agree to all sorts of comprehensive measures, that in effect, even with him still there, you would have had a kind of a regime change. there was an acknowledgement in london, and tony blair said this in public once, grudgingly acknowledged inside of the u.s. administration, it could be possible in reaction to this concerted pressure of the international committee, which was resolution 1441, that it would not be necessary to go to war.
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another way of putting it was if saddam hussein had been clever enough, he could've done things that would have made it impossible to go to war. . and there was no further mystery or confiscation about what he had and what he did not have. the real problem, the real problem -- the core of the problem -- x> ñ did draw, severl
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times, the attention of london. the military timetable had been decided before the u.n. inspectors went. so you found yourself in a situation in autumn of 2002 where you could not synchronize the military timetable with the inspection timetable. the american military had been given instructions -- initially, it was to be ready by january. there was a lot of confusion inside the american military establishment about the size of the force, where they should come from, do we bring the army down from germany, the turks said no. in january was never realistic. in the end, it went back to march.
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when you look at the time table for the inspections, it was impossible to see how it could bring the inspection process to a conclusion, for better or worse, by march. the result of that was to turn resolution 1441 on its head. 1441 had been a challenge to saddam hussein to prove his innocence. because we cannot synchronize the programs, somehow or another -- the preparation of war and inspections -- inspections, you had to find the vitoria's smoking gun. suddenly -- at the notorious smoking gun. we found ourselves scrambling for the smoking gun, which is not a way of saying that he has to prove his innocence, we have
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to prove he is guilty. we, the americans, the british, have never recovered from that. there was no smoking gun. >> the military timetable meant that we simply did not allow enough time for the inspectors to do the job they had been asked to do. and by january of 2003, the president is giving a state of the union address. in your estimation, at that point, he has close down any option of not going to war. i take from your book on that speech -- he spent half of his speech on iraq, the betty also
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was described in messianic terms. if he left himself any space to step back from war, he closed it down early in 2003 with his state of the union speech on the 29 to january. -- 29th of january. that was six weeks before the time table ran out, early in the inspections process. the window that they were given operate in was so small, it was not a window at all. >> that is an extremely good question. after bush announced before tony blair's visit before september of 2002, there was a briefing telegram that we can't find any archives of -- i said in a briefing telegram that in
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principle, the british american science agreed that we should exhaust the un processes, which includes giving inspectors. what the americans to understand by exhausting resources and what we understand may prove not to be the same. there is a very great risk that this will lead to the complete fractureing of the security council, which i say is what happened. there was a very brief hope, and some disappointment, that after 1441, war might be avoided because the pressure on saddam was extreme. he faced the security council. the unity was more apparent than
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real. there were all kinds of differences on national interest. then came saddam's weapons declaration the set -- and delivered on december the seventh. including the state department, it was, that is it. he is bullshitting us. this is it. a few weeks later, bush gives his state of the union speech. for me, it was quite clearly a summons to war. america, the chosen people, all that stuff that is very common in america, alien to europeans, there is no way that the president can wind back from
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this and last, after some of that, he is removed -- saddam hussein is removed. americans are getting more and more impatient with this process of inspection. they got very excited when blix made his report to the security council. he seemed to be pretty negative about the pattern of iraqi cooperation. it was a very important sign of whether he was in material breach or not. americans got excited about that. as a result, colin powell delivered his famous speech with all the evidence that later turned out to be inadequate and incorrect of iraqi malfeasance.
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there was no point in going on much longer. there is another report after colin powell had done his, and it pulled the reins back a bit. the expectation was with blix in japan -- it being negative in january, it would happen again invade your a. -- in january. it was too late. >> before we do that, i would like to ask my colleagues if they want to [unintelligible] >> i want to take you back to the time of jonathan powell. he said that the question of regime change was discussed, and there were objections that were raised. regime change in terms of
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military invasion, was athere ever an optiont hat -- option that was considered? >> not except for paul wolfowitz, who probably argue for it at that meeting. but the context, as i recall it, that set of meetings with the administration waiting -- the context for violence was arming and financing distant groups. which is provided for explicitly in the iraq liberation act. that is a long answer. the short answer is no.
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the regime change discussed in any of those meetings in terms of an invasion. >> by that time, it had come to mean military invasion? >> sorry, have i been unclear? the official u.s. policy on regime change was in practice and in discussion at that time. sharpening sanctions and trying to stiffen resistance groups. >> i made by the time that john sawyer and jonathan powell came to the united states, regime change had come to mean military invasion? >> no, no. at the beginning of january 2001, even if there were individual scattered around the administration and waiting that would like to have done that, the framework where powell and i
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discussed iraq with condoleeza rice, was 1 --a -- we have to rw iraq policy. b -- colin was going to sharpen sanctions. by the way, we don't want to remove the military operation from the table. i did not hear in the exchanges, any reference at all to a land invasion. i don't think it was ever seriously on the table until 9/11 into the dramatic impact that had on the american administration. >> i thought you were talking about a meeting between january
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and march of 2002. >> if i have caused confusion with the committee, that i am in trouble here. the powell visit was a visit to the administration in waiting before the inauguration at the end of january 2001. this was an early exchange which foreshadowed a policy that was then pursued between inauguration day and 9/11. >> in 2002, regime change had come to mean military invasion. >> effectively. there is still the fermenting of a rebellion, getting another sunni general of milder disposition to remove saddam. that was around. at the time, american forces were cast with making contingency planning for a possible invasion of iraq.
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i hope that i have -- >> it is clear now, thanks. >> post 9/11. one of the lines being pursued quite actively by paul wolfowitz was that somehow or other, saddam hussein might have had some responsibility for 9/11 or links with outside the -- al qaeda. it had been the work of iraq. did you have a conversation with him or other members of the administration? >> i had conversations with him in particular. he was quite convinced that there was a connection, a strong connection, between saddam hussein and al qaeda. there was constant reference to
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the fact that muhammed, one of the guys responsible for 9/11 had meant iraq -- met iraqi agents in prague. apparently, it is rubbish. but you could not dig it out of the blood veins -- out of the veins of the american administration. somewhere in northern iraq, on the border with iran, there was then al qaeda camp that saddam was allowing to happen. apparently, that was not true either. they were not an al qaeda operation. in the end, as you probably
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know, the defense department became so irritated with the perceived bias of the cia against the intelligence which the department of defense wanted to believe, they created their own in-house intelligence operation that ran as a rival to and replacement of the cia. the background to all of this -- god knows what was going on in london. there is not simply: paul -- colin powell. you had the vice president's office that did not believe the cia. the cia on these matters appeared to be very much in the camp of the state department. >> my next question is about
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november, 2001. related the conversations we had with the ministry of defence on tuesday. bush had a press conference in late november 20001 where he was asked about -- 2201 -- 2001. there was discussion with the american media about interviews with crumbs fell to -- rums feld. did you report this as the first signs of iraq coming into view? >> i don't have the reporting telegram in front of me, but we were watching this stuff like cox we almost got too close. there was no doubting the for an
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office with this kind of reporting. i remember the press conference pretty well. of course we did. without having it in front of me, i can't believe -- i don't think the foreign office can claim ignorance the way the wind was blowing. they made it extremely plane. -- plain. on the fifth of november, i could not find in the archives, they lay all this out. -- laid all this out. we were may be overly deciduous -- assiduous. >> this is the moment to take a
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break. we will come back in 10 minutes. if members of the public need to leave the room, that is fine. please come back in 10 minutes, or the doors will be shut and that will be had for the morning. thank you very much. we will begin again in 10 minutes. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2009] >> let us resumed, if we may. >> sir christopher, we talked about the conditions that the united kingdom was attempting to join the americans in their policy. and towards military action. what were these conditions? >> i only found out about these conditions -- let me start again. there are two separate things here. the conditions were -- the
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violence between the palestinians and israel were winding down in some way. that is something which tony blair and the british government repeated very frequently. it was a necessary precondition of taking any action against saddam hussein. the construction of a coalition, and the reentry of weapons inspectors -- i only saw all these conditions formally listed as a result of the crawford meeting through elite when a cabinet officer -- a leak when a cabinet notice paper. there were part of the diplomacy we were pursuing. the coalition, the un, doing
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something about the terrible bloodshed between the israelis and palestinians. it was not clear that these were things that we would like to have, or the actual conditions of going further on iraq. as time went by, they did not look much like conditions, and the buds were a bit feeble -- but's were a bit feeble. the "yes, but" approach from crawford. the yes was tehre,b -- there, but the "but's" were fading away? >> [unintelligible] >> they were not formulated like that. if you're going to go through
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the un in the hope of getting an agree un position, by definition, the issue of legality would fall away. >> and that is what we did? >> if you look at conditions now, so called conditions, we failed miserably on one, trying to track down the arab-israel dispute. things almost wanted to reverse rather than going forward. -- went into reverse rather than going forward. do you want me to take each condition one by one? >> did they agree to publish the root? -- roughte -- route? >> let's be frank about it. the american statement of the fourth of april in which, at the
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time when the israeli defense force was in towns creating damage and casualties, the americans called for israel's early withdrawal. that made life infinitely easier for tony blair when he came to crawford and had to do a joint press conference with the president. i think it could have revealed a rather large split between blair and bush. that was the high point of british influence. no sooner had the statement, demanding the early withdrawal of idea forces from west bank, that a major political operation was launched to reverse the nature of the call. colin powell had been sent to
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the region. when he came back, he was of the view that he had been consistently undermined by his enemies while he was away in the administration, and the u.s. congress, and by someone who is now the israeli prime minister, coming to washington and working against -- >> we got some progress on the middle east, but not nearly enough. >> the definitive american statement was one made in june, which rode back a long way and effectively said that we will leave the middle east, and we will not do anything until the palestinians get rid of yessir arafat. they didn't do that until he died. >> going through the un was another condition, going 48
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resolution, -- for a security council resolution, during the british policy towards britishsaddam hussein rather than regime change? was that the second bundle of conditions? >> it is evident that the devil was in the detail. exhausting you and processes that included the introduction and read production -- of weapons that iraq, it went as far as it went. as i said earlier, the definition of exhausting un processes was far from -- i was concerned with what the americans thought that meant and what we thought that meant. it could be very different.
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you could say that we overcame -- the british overcame a series of major obstacles to get what we wanted from the u.n. just to explain what i mean by getting rid of obstacles, first of all, the u.s. administration had to be persuaded -- in their principal, the u.n. had a role. they had to be persuaded that if the u.n. were to have a role, there will need to be a security council resolution to reflect this. there was a massive battle inside the u.s. administration before president bush gave his speech at the un general assembly in 2002. we did not know until last minute whether he would even refer to resolution. in the end, he referred to
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resolutions. to this day, we do not know if i was deliberate or if he meant as a resolution similar -- singular. his teleprompter broke down. the detail is important. there is a huge battle over what would go into the resolution. one needs to know these things. that is why 1441 was fatally undermined by the ambiguities necessary to get the consensus. >> let's turn to the third one you mentioned. how did we do on that one? the answer is fairly self- evident. >> if you add up all the people that went to iraq, it comes up to quite a respectable number. 30 or 40 mentions were there.
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who is absent, of course, both politically and militarily were a majority of its members. >> why were we not able to exercise more traction. the u.k. became the indespensible ally. if we work, couldn't we have had more traction? with the americans to get a better overall result of these conditions? >> my view, and i think i have said this in the book, given the nature of the relationship between george w. bush and tony blair, we could have achieved more by playing a tou gher role.
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for example, and this is not the first time i had said it, if we had made it a condition of our participation that india inde -- indeed, we should have been detailed planning for what would happen if we were to remove saddam hussein, it could be a very different outcome. >> in the end, we were left with the choice to be able to ongoing with the state's, taking us into some uncomfortable areas, or should we part company with the united states with all the downside is that that would entail. -- all the down sides that that would entail?
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>> it would depend on when it was done. it did not necessarily mean parting company. if, for example, and i wasn't fair, but i am pretty sure it happened. if crawford had said, i want to help george on this, but we will not be allowed to take in any individual operations. we have absolute clarity about what happens in iraq if it comes to that, removing saddam hussein, it would have changed the nature -- it would not have led to a rupture, but it would have changed the nature. it could set it at camp david the september meeting, and it would of had an impact.
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things had been decided. let's not forget that in january or february of 2003, before the government in london had the house of commons, george bush picked up the phone and said it would be politically different -- it difficult for you, you can set up a war -- sit out a war. rumsfeld said, if push comes to shove, we don't need teh brits. >> [unintelligible] >> impossible to say. we had a very high reputation at the time in the united states. there was no popular stance in favor of going to war. it was not particularly encouraging of the administration.
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i did not come across anybody except for an oil man in houston. i doubti t would have done a loto f damage. -- a lot of damage. >> in order to be seen as a good ally and reap the benefits that would produce, was it necessary for us to go in with the strength that we did? could we have made a smaller contribution to the operation? >> i'm sure we could've made a smaller contribution to the operation. it was not in the heart of a military plan, along the spectrum of military persistence, what made us fix on the large land force. i remember being told by a member of the administration quite early in 2002, we were apparently planning to send more or less what we did send.
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i'll always have to say, if it came the war. -- if it came to war. in addition to political support, it would've been greatly received and had done no damage to our reputation inside the administration or the american people at large. >> what benefits to british interests did we gain, did we advance by the role that we took? >> that is a great question. it is one that much preoccupied me. as the months went by in 2002, every now and again i got in touch with the foreign office and said -- i think i said this
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in my annual view in 2001. it is wonderful stuff being applauded where every ago, having lights up on the scoreboard at the big baseball match in new york. welcome to the british ambassador. i almost felt like i needed somebody sitting behind me whispering, i remember you a mortal. the key thing right now, translating this popularity in a real achievements which benefit the national interest. and we failed. i will tell you why we failed. we failed on persuading the united states administration to liberalize air services across the atlantic.
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such that british airways and other airlines could enter the country on agreements with their numbers in the united states. that been trying to fly and carry passengers to u.s. -- to the u.s. since the beginning of time. let's try and use this capital to get that. the other thing, which was profoundly irritating, almost on the day that the 45 commandos arrived in afghanistan to help with the war, the americans slapped tariffs on exports from the u.k., what they called specialty steel. i asked karl rove, what in christ's name do you think you're doing on something like this? the basic answer was, the steel industry is in terrible trouble.
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it is important for the president's reelection effort in 2004. it is just politics, but we will try to pass this tariff in the medical aid the consequences -- and tried to mitigate the consequences. the british government could have and should have made a bigger effort to get what we wanted on those points in return for the assistance we were giving them. >> to make sure that i properly understand this, to summarize what you just said, it was not essential for the defense of british interests that we actually played the part that we did choose to play in iraq. it was not essential for reasons of british-american relations. it would not have been necessarily massive damage if we
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had done so. and we failed to secure specific benefits, steel and air services, that we should have done other than to become popular by doing what we did. >> i don't want to -- it is sort of dropped logic -- chop logic. if you excepted -- and i was in favor of removing saddam hussein. i thought, so you can understand where i am coming from, you didn't even need weapons of mass destruction as a clear and present danger. there was a very strong argument for confronting saddam
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hussein because he had not lived up to the commitments of resolution 687 after the 1991 war. he had thrown around the inspectors effectively at the end of 1998. we still know that he had the means and the will to concoct weapons of mass destruction at a later date. there is a british interest, we should have done it in 1999. it would not allow the security council to do it. it would not have damaged the british in -- british interest if we had gone and your numbers. it would have damaged our relations in the united states if we actively opposed it.
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and we could have done more on issues which some may have regarded as minor, but were important to us. i'm not sure i said anything more than what i said the first time. >> i have one more question that i wanted asked, about the aftermath planning. do my colleagues want to comment on any of these points? >> just one question about whether we had the option to walk away. what would have happened, for instance? if in that speech at the united nations, with or without the help of the teleprompter, bush had not mention it -- mentioned
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iraq. >> it might have resulted in -- it was not only we that were pushing for the un. italians, australians, the likelihood of that happening -- it is a hypothesis that is worth considering. if bush had decided to repudiate the u.s. altogether -- the u.n. altogether, i suspect it would have procued a -- produced a crisis for us. >> it was a critical moment? >> it was a critical moment that bush should have agreed to refer to resolutions, and there was a period between 7th of september
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and the 14th where the needles swu -- needle swung back and forth in the administration. you did not know which draft of the speech was going to prevail. >> and try to influence for the deal stopped, was there warning -- where the needle stops, was there warning that the british enterprise would diminish? >> if we don't get the u.n. in this speech and we don't make a serious effort, the first instance of regime change -- >> that would be assuming that the prime minister continued to support for the policy.
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people often cite the analogy of vietnam'. he did not go to vietnam, but he supported the americans. >> if you forgive me, it is not a wholly -- it was a bad period for u.k. - u.s. relations. the fact that he smoked a pipe in the u.s. office was offensive to some. the thing about anglo-american relationships, it is not characterized by its stability. it is characterized by volatility, an extraordinary ups and downs. >>xdçó i was not talking to -- >> it was interesting.
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>> it is an extremely interesting question. but i am interested in the a fallacy -- in the question of a policy. the prize and actually sending forces -- >> i could see the prime minister blair, given what he had seen in 1998, given where he was coming from, would have ever done a harold wilson if i can put it liket hat. -- like that. what level of military support might have been an alternative to sending the armored brigade. i cannot envisage, post 9/11, tony blair and the way the harold wilson did, put distance between himself and the white
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house. >> can you imagine him pursuing the military option for the united kingdom without reference to the united nations, without the un route? >> he had a president in kosovo that did not benefit from the security council resolution. it was subject to serve roderick's view of acquiescence of the russians. i think the short answer to the question is, sending 50,000 british troops to iraq. it all broke down on the second resolution.
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they had, at least, that an effort. thank you. >> christopher, was there a perception in the usa that participation would be inevitable? >> there was a stage -- and what i was told by a very regular contact, somebody senior in the state. from the national security council, i warned london about this in the middle of the summer, that we were, i thought, being taken for granted. it was assumed partly because we were engaged in the contingency planning on the military side. i assume that what tony blair had said it in private to bush
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would be public the next day. there was an assumption. the brits were going to be there. i would say that london had been taken for granted. by the way, what about air services and steel tariffs? >> your suggesting that we did not use the interest that we had as positive things we could have done? >> if i put it charitably, we underestimated the leverage at our disposal. >> you are traveling about the country a lot, and there is not a lot of support for the war? >> it is not that it was building opposition to the war, it was simply that -- i went to 45, maybe more cities, and he
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did not get that patriotic surge of people punching the air, let's go get saddam. people were anxious and cautious about it. >> was that linked to the government here by yourself and others? what was the action? >> there was no reaction. telegrams and reports sent back to headquarters do not always illicit a response. >> i need did anybody change in practice? >> i don't think so. >> i want to get briefly in the aftermath. there are more questions that he wants to ask you before we finish. do we have a period in autumn 2002, you sit in your book that
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post war iraq was a blind spot in washington. they had bought fully and to neo-com idea that with the overthrow of saddam, all would be lights with automatic benefits in the middle east. was participation in planning for the aftermath in having a coherent plan, assessing what is likely to happen in the aftermath, one of the conditions that was trying to set -- that we had been trying to set? and what actually happened in the period up to the time they left washington? -- that you left washington? >> throughout 2002, it was not just my level, but other members of the staff, after saddam
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plannigng black spot, black hole, whatever you liket o say -- tliek toke tos say, it was possible for the american administration to say that they don't even agree on the concept of the aftermath. the most authoritative thing i can tell you is in the book. i found myself at a dinner in washington sitting next to vice- president cheney. and we hadn't had the crucial vote in the house of commons. he asked me what all this meant. i said, the prime minister has
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significant political difficulties in london, and it will be difficult to get over them. his reaction was quite dismissive. once you get by your political problem, and we get to baghdad, we will be greeted with cheers and flowers by the population, all this will be past history. you and the president will get the credit they deserve. there was a significant chunk of the administration that was not particularly concerned about the aftermath because they thought it would come out all right overnight. connelly's a rice -- condoleeza rice said, as difficult as it would be emerging -- the trouble with the europeans is that we were to sniffy -- were too sniffy. what'st eh word -- what's the
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word? condescending of the iraq people, that they were unable to run a democratic system. and i was going to say something else. to answer your question, nothing really changed on that score. >> they remained very optimistic? we did not get into a lot of planning with them. >> we tried. >> did we succeed? >> we did not succeed because they did not have their house in order. >> it never really happened. >> let me finish this point. it sort of happened, but it wasn't enough. in the winter of 2002,
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interagency teams came to engage the americans after words. there is a fragmented interagency reaction. they had all kinds of terrific plans, good people who in the end runs fell -- rumsfeld wouldn't accept. the problem about engaging with the americans on aftermath was that they themselves did not create their own office of reconstruction until february 2003. it wasn't for lack of trying by british officials. i was not present in the meeting with tony blair and george bush on january 31, 2003 when we know
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from a weak record of that meeting -- a leaked record of that meeting that i believe to be authentic, the british team said, what about the aftermath? the response was, it is all in hand. and that was it. i am not giving any scoops here, but this is bad public domain for a least a couple of years. officials did try to engage, and the heart of the matter was that we did not insist enough. and on the american side, they did not get their act together. it turned out it was not good enough anyway. >> [inaudible] >> to go back to the question of british influence on the administration.
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do you feel that because of whatever commitment may have been made in the summer after crawford, that britain's ability to say -- to influence united states policy was -- or would you say that his security council speech was the maximum and central acceptance of the conditions? >> i thought the bush speech was a very good result for us in the united kingdom, as far as it went. it was positive on the u.n. as a whole. it had this blindsided reentry for the united states into
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unesco, which i thought staggering. i am in danger of repeating myself, but it was the result of a lot of influence playing on the white house, including colin powell even though he needed no convincing. and the number of others. it was kind of high tide. we managed to keep the tied pretty high until after the president's speech. resolution 1441 was a significant diplomatic achievement. it had the seeds of its own destruction in its ambiguity. its ambiguity was on a crucial point on what would be the trigger for war. americans interpreted it one way. everybody else interpreted the other way, and we were stuck in the middle.
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>> on the speech of the security council, was our position being accepted? >> it was, but i would not say that our lobbying was decisive. i think the meeting on august 5, that was decisive. i must say that one of the arguments that colin powell used, it was part of the baggage of our position presented to the president. he did not need a lot of convincing. >> anything else? lawrence.
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>> can i carry on a little bit with this question of influence? you set out the conditions that we sort of made at crawford. there were never sort of red lines in the sense that were announced to parliament as such. these were rather informal conditions. were these the best conditions that we could have sat under the circumstances? i think we have been rather difficult to lay down as a condition. [unintelligible] >> mr. branson would like -- >> i'm sure he would. the policy on iraq, was there a way to formulate a policy in a
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sense by putting ourselves -- it would've been understood that it was harder to move away from these conditions. >> i think the key condition, a key condition that should have been a red line but wasn't, was that the military presence should be subordinate to a coherent political and diplomatic strategy. part of the difficulties that emerged was that, as i said earlier on, a provisional timetable, a contingency timetable for possible military action was set for early 2003.
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in reality, if you're going to go to the un -- with the benefit of hindsight, and hides that has a big role in all of this -- and hindsight has a bigger role in all of this. we exhausted un processes, including the reintroduction -- and depending on whatsaddam hussein does, decide what we will do militarily. you have got to have some contingency planning. i go back to what i wrote at the time. it would not necessarily have been a panacea or solve all the problems, but if you plan for military action in the cool autumnal season of 2003 rather than the cool spring season of
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2003, a lot of things might of been able the bay unwound -- to be unwound. we let the military strategy lag, it should have been the other way around. >> the timetable was so firmly in place. it did move a bit during the course of 2002. >> what you heard quite soon was that all of our contingency planning is based on doing iraq -- the month of january kept popping up. after the summer break of 2002, and i stress that this was contingency. . .
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>> how much understanding was there between britain and the united states that this was an effective deadline? were the british able to say that it would help if you could ñibring it back to later? >> well, one single discussion was when tony blair came to washington in 2003 and he was seeking delay, because i think we were not militarily ready, and he thought it was time for a
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second position, which at the time, it did not look unachievable. i remember a television program the night before saying on these two points, you have not won the argument yet. çóyou can say to the president,i need a delay and a council resolution. you have the americans to make a second attempt, and again they are impressed by the spanish prime minister, by bruce toney, -- berlusconi, by john howard. but it was not because they said we could not do this thing by the march timeframe, but strategically speaking, it did not matter whether it was in january or in march if you believe as i do that it should have been wrapped into a coherent political and
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diplomatic strategy. >> and there was an awareness that the military buildup is taking place. >> that is what happened, and it goes back to what i said earlier. the resolution turned 1441 on its head, and it is time for proof of innocence, and we found ourselves in the intolerable position of having to prove his guilt by finding weapons of mass destruction before a military deadline, which proved impossible.
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>> on this meeting january 31, you mentioned already the aftermath you came up with their. we have had discussions about worst-case with weapons of mass destruction that turned out to be rocky -- wrong, and we have the case of what would happen after the war. was there any concept of all of how awful it could be outside of everybody, what the aftermath to be? i think the worry at the time was that there would be some kind of humanitarian disaster, and the additional work was focused on dad, -- that, on refugees and things like that.
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american and british troops would be quick wit defenses if there had been a strong fear that saddam could respond to these weapons. what just disappeared from the calculations was the understanding that after he was toppled, you were going to have to maintain law and order and guaranteed the continuity of services. otherwise, you would lose the iraqi population rapidly. but when the invasion happened, the u.s. army division there did not do that, we did not have any orders to do that.
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there are witnesses coming before you there are better informed than i am. i retired at the end of february. >> the first point comes from what was just discussed, the timing decision for 2003. military momentum is clearly a major component of that brought timing decision, and we will hear from witnesses about that. they're ouof our military people who feel they could fight the war. is that your understanding?
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>> it is my understanding. there would be a presidential election campaign. how much time could buy in all this? ñikarl rove, i said, how far is this put back. and he said into 2003, at the latest. he might have said january 2004. otherwise, the president would be accused of using the war to win an election." two other points connected with
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the postwar planning. he said in effect that the british prime minister had exerted before and in the aftermath of the invasion, and raised questions as to whether have the british been more explicit, it would have been able to be more fortunate. the other is timing, and the influential effect of 2002 came in too late if you're looking at more detailed planning.
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>> i cannot give a categorical answer. i do not believe it would have been impossible, but if we had our act together in september and october, we could have done it. i think, what would margaret thatcher have done? she would have insisted -- i think i may be hit with a thunderbolt, but i think she would have insisted on a political diplomatic strategy and commanded the greatest clarity about what would happen.
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>> on the aftermath planning, is it right to supposed that the dwebaathification element was really a reaction in april to the breakdown in security rather than a precipitating cause? >> that is outside my time. i have a view, but -- [laughter] >> you were there in the run-up. so if you have a view, let's hear it. >> one was macarthur in japan, the other was what we did in germany.
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i remember in january, clearly we're going to have to get rid of the top few henchman, d but, de -- but we cannot debaathify completely. >> that is important to hear. thank you. ok. moving back to something quite different, you said early this morning that in your view, the declared formal u.k. policy of containment was in effect over by spring or summer, and it was and remains the policy until at least 2002. >> this in itself is a comment
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on the importance of the issue. i cannot really remember ever in 2002 going in to see the argument for containment. i think the switches may have lasted quite a long time, but i do not remember doing this. nowhere in the briefing dar remember sending back. >> there is an asymmetry in the situation. a foreign affairs advisor relationship with the head of security council for different
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personalities and times. in the bush administration, the great administration did not lend itself to a natural bilateral relationship. so how is that managed? >> let me back up a bit. institutionally, if you have a powerful vice-president, it might be the most powerful vice- president ever. his institutional number was the deputy prime minister. it was not a balanced relationship. [laughter] it probably did not reap the dividends that you institutionally may have
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expected. when he came to washington, the prime minister saw cheney on the first visit and most importantly he was at the camp david meeting in 2002. for the rest, i see the vice- president from time to time. the next layer down, particularly john hannah, people who were strong. that was the way we put our fix in and took power.

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